Sometimes it can feel as if the world is resting on your shoulders. Modern life is difficult enough without adding to the strain. When it's getting you down, take a deep breath, and write. Write anything at all, scribble away until you feel calm again. Trust me, it really does work. According to Stephen Kind, On Writing; "The situation comes first. The characters - always flat and unfeatured, to begin with - come next. Once these things are fixed in my mind, I begin to narrate. I often have an idea of what the outcome may be, but I have never demanded of a set of characters that they do things my way. On the contrary, I want them to do things their way. In some instances, the outcome is what I visualised. In most, however, it's something I never expected."
So, do you have a master plan?
Personally, I life to plan my novels, but lots of writers just let the words flow onto the page and only scramble control of them once the first draft is completed. I like planning, I like the safety of knowing where I'm going with my story. Essentially though, I always leave myself a little "wiggle room" so that when that extra twist sparks into life, I can find a way to include it into the novel. Often, that extra special twist is something I don't think I would ever have thought of in a million years. It's always as if the characters have told me. It comes to life whilst writing, not whilst planning.
So, to plan or not to plan?
Well, it's a personal choice. Try it both way and see what works best for you. After all, we can't all be the same!