My Take On Planning -vs- Pantsing.

This Sunday I get to go to the West Seattle Farmers Market for the first time. I went to their website and put it on my calendar, plotting my visit. After looking at the list of vendors I’m already planning my purchases. They even have two mushroom vendors! If only the beer person was there year round, it would be a perfect day. Oh well.

If I were pantsing this visit, I’d just have it on the radar as something that might happen that day. Like I did last weekend, when I had *nothing* to do.

Psst. That’s a joke. If you live in a house with the enchanted forest at your doorstep, you very rarely have *nothing* to do.

What was supposed to happen was that I would spontaneously say: “Let’s go!” And blammo, we’d be there enjoying authentic cuisine of some sort. But that didn’t happen. I forgot, we were all sad. My pants stayed on.

This is relevant, apparently, because I’ve seen the topic pop up in three tweets, one blog and two emails. So apparently in the big bad world, people need to analyze this shit. Raising my hand and waving: My turn!

I live my life a lot like I write. That’s a bit over-kill for many of you, I know. I plan things out, I call people, interview them, to see if they are good to work with before I hire them. My gardener got the job solely on the fact he, his wife and I get along famously. We crack each other up. Well, and they’re affordable. That too. Just like I interview people to help me with character development.

My days are gently mapped out, with a plan A, B, and C. Very lightly. Sometimes I’ll make lists when my brain can’t hold anymore information. My calendar has silly reminders on it like “Green Garbage Day.” Often times I’ll keep photo’s, old bills, advertisements and business cards long past their need date just to help me remember things. Same as I do for the information I gather for my stories.

Every once in a while I’ll revisit my internal list of life’s “To-Do’s” and evaluate how I’m doing there. I’ll change my mind about a whole bunch of things like, now, at 43 I’m fine with my mom coming to live with me in her final days. When I was 41, not so much. Same goes for revisiting finished manuscripts. So I finesse things, and try to make them *just right*.

But for the most part, I just live my life. And I just write what comes out. Good thing you can’t see me right now. Yup. No pants. I’m wearing a robe! Get your mind out of the gutter.

Does that make me a Pantsing Planner? Or strictly a planner. I don’t know, I guess I’m a little of both. I think bottom line, it’s whatever works for you. One person isn’t better for taking an order from you at a restaurant without an order pad than another who jots the whole thing down. It’s just a different way of doing things.

Except, about planning to go to the farmers market. That’s genius at it’s finest :-).


3 thoughts on “My Take On Planning -vs- Pantsing.

  1. It would probably do me good to put my plans in writing. I want to check out various parks, playgrounds, trails, and of course farmers markets. I haven’t done much of it yet but it’s been in my head for years.

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