I've been working on a house-name Western based on an outline I wrote while I was in Austin for the World Fantasy Convention (scribbled on a hotel notepad, actually). I thought I had worked out a simple but compelling plot that would make for a pretty easy book to write. But once I started working on it, I found myself thinking, "Hey, what if I made this guy the villain instead of this other guy?" No, I decided, that would be too complicated and would take too much setting up. So I kept going. But then I thought, "If I did this and this and this, it would set things up so that the other idea would work after all." Once I decided to go for it, though, I realized I had to set up half a dozen other things. Still, the twist was nice and all the clues I was planting seemed to work, but I was having to go through the book and plant those clues, and it got to the point where I had to write a whole new outline just to keep track of everything I needed to do . . .
I feel like I should stand up and say, "My name is James, and I'm a plotaholic."
Cat Ballou (1965)
32 minutes ago