For days now my poor family has been suffering my sighs, exclamations of horror and claims that I’ve been sent to sleep by my own manuscript. But no, that isn’t a bad sign, it’s just the sign of a crappy first draft. I am not a planner; I’m a flyer by the seat of my pantser so I had no idea where I was going. Of course it’s a mess but ‘writing is rewriting’ isn’t it? No-one has to see it until I’ve done some major surgery.
Monday, April 05, 2010
All first drafts stink, honest
Yesterday I finished reading my first draft.
First drafts are always sh*t though, right? Who said that? Hemingway? Elmore Leonard?
And there were good things. If I try to be fair and not totally panic-stricken the last 180 pages weren’t bad, in fact, I rather enjoyed them, so I must have learned something as I wrote. I had a good idea of the story by then. I noted in those pages that I went in late to scenes and got out early: excellent. The first 280 pages were quite awful and there’s a lot of work to do on them but if I can identify the better scenes, I can remedy the crappier ones. And my dialogue is mostly good even if my narrative stinks.
Okay; deep breath and no more talk of shredders.