Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Archive for March 2nd, 2013

F. Scott Fitzgerald on the art of outlining

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F. Scott Fitzgerald

Invent a system Zolaesque…but buy a file. On the first page of the file put down an outline of a novel of your times enormous in scale (don’t worry, it will contract by itself) and work on the plan for two months. Take the central point of the file as your big climax and follow your plan backward and forward from that for another three months. Then draw up something as complicated as a continuity from what you have and set yourself a schedule.

F. Scott Fitzgerald, in a letter to John O’Hara (courtesy of Open Culture)

Written by nevalalee

March 2, 2013 at 9:50 am

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