In an interview with So I'm Fifty, Above World author Jenn Reese talks about her planning process, including figuring out what her "candy-bar" scenes are:

I am an unrepentant planner. When I start working on an idea, I write everything down in a Moleskine notebook that never leaves my side – not while I'm at work, not while I'm asleep, not ever. The notebook is basically an external brain where I trap every single thought related to the book, including all the stupid ones I'll never use.

Candy-bar scenes are another big thing for me. First, I should note that "candy-bar scenes" come from author Holly Lisle ( who has a lot of great advice on her website. I list every scene that I'm dying to write – a first kiss, a fight scene with a particular kind of weapon or in a neat setting, a surprising twist that I can't wait to spring on my characters. I have to know the big final scene of the novel (at least what it means to the main character), and it must be a candy-bar scene, a scene that I can't wait to write. If it's not, then it's not the right final scene and I have to keep thinking.

Once I've got the ending, I start to sketch out an outline – only a few brief sentences per chapter or just a chronological list of beats. I like to have structure, but to leave enough room for unexpected turns or for a side character to become more interesting. If I plan everything out too much, then it's not as fun for me to write.

Having said all that, I think processes should stay fluid. I'm continually changing as a writer and a person, and each story is different. I like to think that I'll keep adapting as I go.


Read the rest of the interview over at the link. [So I'm Fifty]