If you’re not running your writing with an outline, you’re either a genius talent or a lazy bastard… either way, I don’t like you.
You probably didn’t even bother to read my article Outline Basics. Shame, shame, shame, I know your name.
For the rest of us hard-working mortals, outlining is a critical step in the creative process. As I discuss in the above article (and Storycraft for Comics) outlines arrive first, in the simplified Skeletal form (basically a beat sheet) and second, in a more Comprehensive long form.
Since Skeletal outlines are fundamentally shorthand notes, there’s not too much to go over there as far as how you put down your details (the structural points themselves are the important part—different conversation)… but when you move into Comprehensive outlining… it’s crucial to work efficiently.