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  1. #1

    The F***ing process

    so I'm 70k into my first draft of my first novel I have ever written (or at least gotten this far to finishing).

    I do my best to write and write the story. I try not to focus too much on making everything that makes it what it should be perfect. I just want to finish my first draft and least get the story down.

    But when I stop for a second and reflect on the words I'm spewing. I think about what I want to do when I do a rewrite.

    Then I wonder if I should actually just start fixing that **** now.

    Is that a bad idea?

    Should I get the story just finalized then worry about these stupid ass thoughts later?

    To sum it up. Should I spew the **** first time around then fix it. Or, now that I have some major idea's and changes should I stop and go back and change it.....

    I gotta stop typing on this forum when I'm drinking Jack.

    Jay? Rogue? I would like another debate...haha.

  2. #2
    Senior Member John Oberon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Columbus, Ohio
    I vote you finish it, then edit.

  3. #3
    Rogue Mutt
    Yeah just finish it and worry about editing later. Hemingway said first drafts are [crap].

  4. #4
    Member Writers Choice's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Well, I finished. Now I am on version 8.1 of my manuscript. If I had kept going back and changing it, I'd still be only half way done. I was going back and forth during my initial write and then discovered when I was done - I ended up changing the rewrite because the story took a twist in a direction that I wasn't expecting. I had a solid plan of what the story was going to be but this darn thing ended up having a life of it's own - the character's began to develop more personalities as I wrote and well ..... Version 8 IS about 50% rewrite from Version 1.0.

    Also, your beta readers and people on this forum will start to ask you some tough questions that will make you revise your earlier draft. I vote with the other two and keep going.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Elkins Park PA
    You can't fix what you haven't written.

    But that being said, the advice to "just get it done and fix it in editing," presupposes you already know how to write—as a publisher views that act. But let's suppose you don't know how a scene on the page differs from one on film and stage, and why it must. If you let your familiarity with scene in film guide you, will you write a scene a publisher will smile on? No. If you don't know why most scenes end in disaster for the protagonist, will yours end that way?

    Those aren't things you can fix in editing, for two reasons. First is that you'd probably have to do a re-layout of the scene, structurally, which means a lot of rewriting and rethinking. But of more importance, if you're making mistakes because you lack data, you won't know you made it, and can edit forever, and never fix it, because no matter how hard you try to solve the wrong problem... Doesn't it make sense to have a feel for what you're trying to accomplish before you set out to do it?

    I say this a lot, but I do because it's true. The writing skills we learned in our schooldays are nonfiction skills, and have as their goal informing the reader concisely and accurately—useful skills in life and on the job. But writing fiction for the printed word has a very different goal. Your reader wants to be entertained emotionally, by being made to feel as if they're living the story, moment-by-moment, as-the-protagonist. And that takes writing techniques, and specialized knowledge unique to the profession. It's not hard to acquire, though. Your local library's fiction writing section is a great resource, and worth checking out, because you'll not only find the answers to the questions you may have, you'll find the answers to the questions you didn't know you should be asking.

    As Mark Twain so wisely observed, “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.” And we all come to writing fiction with a whole lot of, "just ain't so, because we all leave school believing that writing is writing, and we have that taken care of.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Here we go again.

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