It seems to me that some writers over-write, getting everything down that they can think of, and editing it down later; and some writers under-write, getting down the bare bones and adding to it later. I fall into the latter category, and wish I didn’t.
My writing is very plot-driven. Only as I have progressed as a writer have I started to pay more attention to characters, and include character development as part of the plot. In the beginning my characters were cardboard constructions whose only purpose was to advance the plot. The trouble was, that no one was interested in the plot because they didn’t care about the characters.
NaNoWriMo was a huge help to me. I knew my story outline was not worth 50,000 words, so every day the goal was to write as many words as possible without getting to the end of the scene. I had to put in as much detail as possible. It really changed the way I write – for the better, I hope.
My son was amazed that, after writing three novels about the spaceship The Kestrel, that I had no idea what the bridge looked like. In fact, I didn’t know the layout of the ship at all. It didn’t seem to be important to know what the surroundings were like. You’re probably horrified too.
I am a great reader, yet never took the trouble to pay attention to how the book was written. I think it’s about time!
So now I am going through the Kestrel novels again, from the beginning, to add in the details I should have put in originally! (All suggestions gratefully received.)