Last year, I was one of the young authors who entered James Patterson's Maximum Ride book: Fang - The Missing Chapter. One of the requirements was to include a proper outline. At the age of 15 and in the middle of the 9th grade I had no idea what an outline even was. Of course I watched James Patterson's video of the rules of this fabulous contest. When he got to mentioning the outline he kept ranting how it was ABSOLUTELY important and he wouldn't be so successful with out it.
He would have to plan each chapter in continuous action pactness. I still didn't understand what an outline was so I looked it up than later on asked for my mom's help. She explained that you go by roman numerals of the main event than you list under it in lowercase letters of what would be included.
Later in that school year I actually had to do an outline fora final and I was totally skilled to do it unlike the other freshman.
My grade actually learned about and how to an outline this past school year as sophomores. But it wasn't till quite recently in my book writing that I actually learned the importance of an outline. I(and my classmates)thought an outline was a comets waest of time and totally useless. I know some of you are agreeing with this notion but you are WRONG!
I used an outline, recently, to plan an ENTIRE trilogy! And I have NEVER done something like this!My stories in the past have all been failures/ incomplete failures. I realized that these stories were failures because they had no PLAN! These stories werent going anywhere! They just turned out as blagh...because they had no PLAN!
An outline is THE plan. You can have a sheer proof plan where you purposely have exciting-nonboring-funny-etc plan of your book/series.
When I used this amazing method, I generalized what I wanted done in the series. When I actually went to write, I realized I was doing what James Patterson was trying to teach us young writers: outline your story in a fast pace so the reader never gets bored or want to put down he book! His method makes authors so successful in heir careers!
"I've always known how I wanted to end the Vampire Academy series."- Richelle Mead. I have continuously wondered how and why she did this. I guessed that she did this so that she could create a kick-ass series in-between her beginning and her ending.
It was that but after learning the significant importance of an outline in writing a book series, I realized that she always knew how she would end the series from the very beginning because she planed(made an outline) of he entire 6 book series when she came up with the idea of Vampire Academy(and she did not come up with the vampire part because of twight, she said she got the vampires: moroi,dhampirs, strigoi; from Russian myhology. This creating process was during the time Stephanie Meyer was creating Twilight).
James Patterson was CORRECT! Outlines are he KEY to writing a successful book/series. No author has been successful without an outline(I don't actually know this for certain but it's definately true in the truth in this subject).
For proof of this method of success, look up on YouTube.com of Richelle Mead's 12 minute video of herself as a successful author. Look for a scene where she's in her office and she is standing infront of a whiteboard with post-it notes on it that are connected together by lines. This is her planning in diagram form of an outline.
Till next time, keep writing and reading books as much as you can! Successful books are successful for many important reasons...you just have to find them.