Less books
MIA - my Globe and Mail, not the singer

Your novel's first draft is like an unruly teenager

I read an interesting post on this, so thought I'd add a comment to it. Said comment kept growing and growing, so I figured I might as well use it to wite a new blog post. I've learned to always open to more procrastinations.


I love the idea of a first draft as a teenager. Mine is a first first draft, I never had written more than a few hundred words at one time so it was a challenge, but it was great fun too. However, now my supportive friends that have seen it gush over every page like it was a perfect newborn baby. While I do agree that this whole birthing process was both painful and rewarding, and quite an accomplishment, I now need to find critical friends that will see it as an annoying and incomplete teenager, but with -just maybe - the potential to grow into something beautiful. But before they see it I need to polish this first draft.

Being retired for several years I'm already into the life-style of a writer I think, as my days are all unstructured and uncommitted, and thus ready to be filled writing, or with procrastinations, or with sparkly things. Hours spent reading about writing, and writing about not writing.
I've found several good blogs on writing by authors and editors and publishers, as well as a couple of good how-to books, so I keep collecting more and more good ideas, and also seeing more and more holes and gaps in my first draft. I'm trying to stay positive though, no need to abandon it - yet. The challenge for me will be in actually stopping the research and planning, and starting the massive cut and paste, the slash and burn and replanting that is needed. 
I wrote my novel as part of the yearly NaNoWriMo last November. There's a NaNoEdMo in March apparently,  basically a commitment to 50 hours of editing in a month. I'm sure I'll spend much more time on my novel once I get going, but this will hopefully be a good target for me to aim at initially. And perhaps that focus will calm my fans/friends also, most of them don't understand why there should be such a long delay - months already - between first draft and a hard copy in bookstores.
Which reminds me - time to get back to my research. Or maybe I can expand this comment into a blog post. While that would not be focusing on my novel. it would at least be writing.
(Isn't it amazing how easy it is to justify being distracted yet again?)




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