It took many hours of work, and lots of paper, but I finally managed to put together the finalized decision trees for the sequel to Weekend Plans.
The top-left of this large sheet of paper is my first attempt at doing decision trees based on the outline, but what I figured out quickly is that I had fucked things up so much that I couldn’t continue that way and I had to try a different method. The rest of the sheet is various decision trees based on the actual events in the book, as opposed to the page numbers. Anything in orange is an actual page in the book (or several pages). Anything in black is a decision tree that I pruned, either because it’s repeated elsewhere or because it would have pushed me up over 500 total pages.
After I wrote the second version of the outline, I played through the entire book over and over until I had highlighted each line in my document in orange. To keep track, I made the above decision tree sheet. Yellow-highlighted items are “THE END” pages — there are a lot fewer of them in the sequel than in the original, but unlike the original, there are no “bad” endings (the original has one “bad” ending, and it’s not even that bad). There’s also no “best” ending (I picked one ending in the original as the “best” one).
Version 2 of the outline contained 464 pages. But when I finished the page-number tree, I realized that I had almost 60 pages that didn’t come from anywhere or go anywhere. So I removed them, dropping the final outline to 408 pages. In print, that’s probably going to be closer to 550 or 600, so this is going to be a doorstop, but it’ll be a fun doorstop, full of spanking.
Now I just have to write all those pages. Not daunting at all.