I stumbled a bit on my current project as I didn’t properly do my homework before starting. The big thing, well, I didn’t sufficiently flesh out some of the characters. I did an outline and wrote most of the novel with a rather cardboard love interest, and that’s currently killin’ me.
Fleshing him out is resulting in significant changes to the story. Significant. Which means a lot of rewriting. It’s been painful.
As far as worldbuilding, well, I took some shortcuts. I set the story in current-day Seattle, and threw in some of the standard paranormal stuff, such as vampires, witches and demons. I’m using Mesopotamian mythology as a basis, which does make things interesting, and I think the world is sufficient for a basic urban fantasy.
I also did some basic outlining, but I really should’a known my characters before doing that. I know some folk can do most of this stuff by the seat of their pants, but I think that comes from experience and strangely enough, I tend to like a bit more structure when approaching projects.
So, this time around, I’m going to take more care in character development before diving into the story. I’ll need to iterate between outline and character just to make sure they all fit, but I’d like to have that done before November first.
I’ll need to do a bit more work on worldbuilding, as well. I’m doing a dystopian cyberpunk novel, and while it could be argued that we currently live in a rather technological dystopian society, I’d like to take things a step or two further.
I think in this case, the world itself will drive the story, hence the characters, so I’ll start with that.