A couple of weekends ago, I presented at a SCBWI regional conference. During an authors' roundtable, the topic of plotters vs. pantsers came up. That is, do you outline your novel or write it by the seat of your pants? I forget how many raised their hands for each, but the bottom line, we decided, was that you really do the same amount of work either way. Plotters do the majority of work up front; pantsers do it in the revision process.
I'm decidedly a plotter when it comes to writing novels. (I do pants short stories, though.) However, as I was listening to how some other authors approached the business of getting published, I realized I had been a complete pantser in that regard. One particular author (cough, Beth, cough) talked about her very methodical approach to querying. She had an actual plan and goals!
I, on the other hand, have to admit I sold Memento Nora by the seat of my pants. After I'd written (and workshopped) it, I attended the Mid-Atlantic SCBWI regional conference and then subbed MN to three of the four editors who'd been on a panel. My current editor was one of those panelists. Don't get me wrong. I love working with her and the good folks of Marshall Cavendish. I just mean that I totally lucked out! But then I had to do some work (play catch-up) in regards to getting an agent and learning about the business.
So moral of the story is that whether you're a plotter or pantser--in writing or business--you still got to do the same amount of work, just at different stages of the process.
Are you a plotter or a pantser? In which areas?