[This short article first appeared as part of the online launch of The Writers' Toolkit which remains available on Facebook and contains articles, tips, mini-tutorials and editorial comments on work that authors submitted for critique prior to the launch]
To plan or not to plan
There’s no rule. Some writers plan in such detail they have an almost book-length plan before they start to write. Others just go by the seat of their pants. It really comes down to what works for you.
I once wrote a book on the basis of half an idea that I liked the feel of. I simply ran with it and wrote. The book became so tangled that by the time I finished it, I didn't even know who had been murdered, though someone had. And the intended murderer had a cast-iron alibi that I couldn't break.
Years later a publisher accepted a later book in this same series and wanted me to rewrite that original tangle of words so that the start of the story could be published too. What a nightmare! I rewrote that book from scratch more times than I like to remember. I changed the viewpoint, the style, even the main character. I sorted out the plot and eventually I surfaced with a book that works.