A lot of people like to say school ruined reading for them. Well, school never ruined reading for me, but it made me detest outlines.
I have always been the impatient type with anything in my life, whether it be grocery shopping, waiting on a train, or writing.
When I began writing in third grade, it was something fun to me. I wrote these fun little stories with my friends and I in them, even entering the Young Author's Competition the following year. Then as I grew older it was suggested I write outlines before starting my story.
I am not sure what grade I started learning outlines in school, but let me tell you, the thought of mixing something that clearly bored the hell out of me, with something I truly loved and had fun with appalled me. I think I even had to write an outline to turn in with papers I did for class, and you know what? I think I wrote the outline after the paper was done a few times.
I have never ever been able to outline an idea before turning it into a story. It felt like a waste of time when I could actually begin a rough draft and let the storyline take me where it was meant to go. It has always either surprised me, totally changed from what I had predicted as I wrote, (another reason why outlines to me are a complete waste of time), or gotten trashed. And that's how I've always wrote.
Now, just over the past year I have learned that what I am is considered a "pantser". "Plotters" actually take the time to outline an idea before making it a story. A lot of the plotting I do is in my head.
I guess everyone has their own style and process that works for them, but outlining has never done it for me. The closest I have ever come to it, is doing a character outline, which I did for the beginning of both The Edge of Springwood and The Next Page. Getting to know my characters is the most important thing for me and that much does help some and add to the storyline once you get into it.