Readers of Fiction are a group of people that prefer to be lied to -- being a writer and an artist, must mean that I prefer to lie.
I've found while working on longer novels, I am simultaneously responsible for a few different things:
- Creating what is.
- Moving toward what will be.
- Hinting at what could be.
Creation is as easy as setting a few parameters, and letting your mind roam. Moving toward what will be, are the far end parameters. Hinting at what could be involves tangential thinking, as you need to present possibilities, without declaring them necessary paths for reader attention.
I find that patching up plot holes is easier once I understand which parts of the book are which. Often times, it's just a matter of reading through the work, to check for internal consistencies, right before writing the conclusion.
Correct a few names, add or delete a scene to bring cohesion. -- Then it's done.