Saturday, April 30, 2011

What's Your Writer Personality Type?

Starting a novel is different for everyone. Some find the freedom of a new story thrilling, others might be daunted by the amount of work ahead. Whatever the case, at some point the new idea must be transferred onto the page. There are all kinds of styles for beginning a brand new novel... where do you fit in? 
The Goldstriker
Description: I start my new novel when inspiration strikes!
You wake up after the most incredible dream, and you know it’ll make an amazing story. Or you’re putting the dishes away, when you’re struck with a brilliant new idea. Maybe inspiration hit after reading an article, or hearing a song-- whatever the case, as soon as you have the chance, you sit at the computer and start writing. Sure, you don’t really know the characters yet, and maybe you’ll need to cut some things, but it all works out in revisions. A true pantser-- when the muse calls, you listen!

The Character Stalker
Description: I start my new novel after I’ve established who my characters are.

You have an idea in mind, but the characters are what really bring out your creativity. You spend long hours daydreaming about them find out every last detail of their past. You know their favorite color, the name of their first pet, and how they would react to nearly any given situation. You are your characters most diligent stalker. You might make character sheets to keep all your info in order, write up character resumes, or have files on each of your main characters, complete with playlists and celebrity look-alikes. And once you know your characters inside and out, you're ready to take them into their story.

The Hash-It-Outter 
Description: I start my new novel after talking out my ideas with a trusted writer buddy.
The first thing you want to do when you get an idea for a new novel is hash it out! You email or call a writer friend and bounce off ideas with him or her. You explain backstory, delve into the heartwrenching dark moment and come up with a glorious ending-- all the while, your writer buddy cheers you on and offers insight on every angle you come up with. 

The Plotting Schemer
Description: I start my novel after I’ve outlined the plot of the story, chapter by chapter, from beginning to end.
A plotter through and through, your story idea is only the beginning! You work out the entire story, making sure each chapter has a setup, scenes that move the story forward, and endings that setup the chapter that follows. You know everything that’s going to happen, from the inciting incident to the final resolution, and when you sit down to write, all of that preparation pays off.

Maybe you've found yourself in one or more of these writer personality types. Or maybe you have a style all your own.

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Diana Paz is a web content writer and aspiring YA author. She grew up on Miami Beach, moved to Los Angeles in high school, and went to college in San Diego. Basically, she's a beach bum, but she did graduate from California State University, San Marcos with a Bachelor's Degree in Liberal Arts. She loves old movies, epic fantasy, all kinds of music, and heading to the beach with a good book. Preferably sipping a caramel frappuccino. Find her at her blog: or on Twitter @dianapazwrites


  1. I am most DEFINITELY a Plotting Schemer. I tried to Pantster it up with a WIP once, but only got a chapter in before a freak-out had me plotting out the entire thing, chapter by agonising chapter. Sigh.

  2. I've got a little bit of each of these. I'm mainly a Character Stalker and Plotting Schemer. I start the novel once I have the characters down, but I have to stop and then plot... That's what I'm doing right now...

  3. Very cool! I'm part plotting & schemer & the goldstriker. I don't really outline, but I do know the general plot ;o)

    Great post!

  4. I'd have to say that I'm a Goldstriker. I just go with something when it strikes me. Sometimes I'll have to think it about and map it out in my head before I start, but basically, I just go with it. Great post! :D