To the shapeless chaos of life, the fiction writer brings order. -Peter Selgin
In fiction, many of us begin with characters, feelings, and events from our own lives. But lives are messy things and the events are often only loosely related (if at all).
When it comes to plotting my stories, I am definitely an outliner. I like to know ahead of time which direction my story is going in. Of course, I’m always open to change as well. Sometimes, the characters take things in a whole new direction than I’d originally planned. In that case, I simply adjust my outline to include those changes. Having an outline doesn’t mean it’s set in stone.