Friday, September 14, 2012

On shitty first drafts.

Last night I was doing some writing--yes! Some writing! Finally!--and while many of the paragraphs I was reading over were pretty good (not perfect, mind you, but first-draft-pretty-good), a few lines/paragraphs/etc gave me pause.

It was then that I realized that, at least in part, I have a bit of a shitty first draft.  Not totally shitty--not at all!--but partially.

I allowed myself a minute to freak out about that.  Perfectionists don't dig shitty first drafts!  And then I sighed with relief.

For once, I'm just like everyone else.  Every other writer, that is.  What writer do you know of who spits out a perfect, publishable novel during the first-draft process?  Yeah, I don't think there are any.  Which means I'm in damn good company with all the other writers who don't love absolutely everything about draft numero uno and will be engaging in a rewrite--hell, probably more than one.

Nobody has never gotten published because they have a shitty, or even partially shitty, first draft.  But they have not gotten published because of a shitty query letter, shitty editing, a totally shitty plot, shitty characters, a shitty job marketing their manuscript and themselves to potential agents and publishers...etc.  So I'm safe...for now.

Just gotta keep my eye on the current goal, which is to write and get the novel finished.  Then I can go back, edit, rewrite, make it pretty.  I do that all the time in my day job; that's nothing new for me.  And--eventually, when the right time comes--it will be an absolutely joy* for me to do it for my own writing.

* That's what I say now, but mark my words: I'll be clawing my eyes out and ruing the day I dreamed up this series.  At least part of the time I'm editing, anyway.

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