How to survive your first draft

//How to survive your first draft

How to survive your first draft

ernest-hemingay-quote

Happy Monday everyone!

I recently wrote a 70,000 word first draft in 28 days. Then, I wrote another 52,000 first draft of another book in 20 more days.

One thing that’s kept me going is telling myself not to worry about perfection, because this is the FIRST DRAFT.

First. Draft.

I’ve spent so many years of writing trying to get it perfect on the first go. And once I realized that it doesn’t have to be, and frankly, WON’T ever be perfect on the first go, then I could really relax more and just write.

So what if this is a cliché phrase, write it and fix it later.

Did I just write the word ”wonder” three times in one sentence? Forget it, fix it later.

This sentence has way too many commas, forget about it– eh, no. Go back and delete those commas. Now.

Sometimes if it is a really super awful flaw in my writing, I will highlight it and turn it pink. Then I when I edit, I know where to start first.

I think it is ridiculously important to remember that you’ll be editing your novel anyhow, and if the sentence just doesn’t seem perfect, don’t stress on it for too long. Keep writing. Write until you type the words THE END (which I always do, because it makes me happy) and then go back and edit that shit.

Don’t waste too much time staring at a blinking cursor thinking of the perfect word to type. Just type its less-than-perfect synonym and keep writing!

I have been correcting the proofs of my poems. In the morning, after hard work, I took a comma out of one sentence…. In the afternoon I put it back again.
– Oscar Wilde

By | 2015-08-17T12:57:36+00:00 August 17th, 2015|Cheyanne Young|1 Comment

About the Author:

Cheyanne is a native Texan with a fear of cold weather and a coffee addiction that probably needs an intervention. She loves books, sarcasm, nail polish and paid holidays. She lives near the beach with her family, one spoiled rotten puppy and a cat who is most likely plotting to take over the world.

One Comment

  1. Farmerbob1 August 19, 2015 at 3:35 pm

    I think that serial webfiction helps a lot with the ‘it’s got to be perfect’ mentality. You have to write it, and you have to post it, even if it’s not as ‘done’ as you want it to be. That doesn’t mean it’s publishable!

    I will fully admit to having issues with this in my most recent webfiction. It’s written to be a rational story. Everything is supposed to make sense. Nothing happens, just because. I have a group of folks over at /r/rational that will poke me and make loud noises if things don’t make sense.

    That said, I’m finally getting close to the point where I’m going to be doing a couple editing passes and sending it to e-book. I have written all of my webfiction with an eye to turning them into e-books.

    I really don’t like editing. I prefer it when smart readers point at things and say “Hey, you! That makes no sense!” Unfortunately, I get few of those readers. Most of the offered corrections are grammatical (which IS nice, but not what I’d prefer.)

    After Set In Stone is published, I’ll be going back to the first original fiction that I wrote, and starting to do a few editing passes on that story, which is divided into 4 books, and about 500k words. I am *not* looking forward to that. My writing, while still needing a lot of improvement, is far better than what I managed a couple years ago. I see a great deal of scene editing and narrative adjustments in my future.

    Symbiote still gets more hits per day on average than both of my two more recent works. The story is apparently more attractive to people in the webserial viewership. I really look forward to the response I’ll get when I rewrite Symbiote with what I’ve learned about writing in the last couple years.

    I’ll be very curious to see which story sells better to the e-book market. But, to get there, I have to edit them.

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