Most writers say they just keep writing and never look back.
Writing about all of these things in a first draft would be daunting and overwhelming. What excites me most about writing is building emotions in my characters and therefore within my readers (the “feels”!), intertwining plots and conflicting themes, crafting twists, etcetera. This type of book cannot be written in one go. If your books are like mine, keep reading ;)
What happens if I force my draft and just keep writing trying to get to the end?
If I try to write my first draft all in one go, characters start doing things that are not supported by previous parts of the plot. I get annoyed. Initially I deal with it, but after a while I lose interest. To write I have to be fully engrossed in the story, just like when I read. If it’s a bad book, it doesn’t matter to me that I will make it better later, I become bored and eventually get stuck.
1-I spend a few days on my outline, so that I have a pretty good idea of where the main story is going.
2-I start writing the main plot (for example, the romance).
3-As soon as I start losing interest I go back to the beginning of that section (my books are typically divided in parts) and start over, adding side plots, building feelings, etc… Mind you, because at this stage I know a bit better where that part is going I start crafting my story by adding humor, sensuality, clues…basically, I have a blast. Typically I get much farther than where I got stuck the first time. When I get stuck again, I start over. I don’t force myself to reread all the chapters. If some worked well I skim through them quickly. If I find myself bored reading a chapter again, it’s probably worth cutting ;)
4-Eventually I end up with a hefty draft, much longer than what my final will be. That’s great, because it will allow me to cut slow part and still add beautiful descriptions and details where needed.
5-I now go back and shuffle chapters in the order that makes more sense, cut parts that drag or repeat, and make sure emotions are building up and clues are planted when needed.
6-Finally, I can proceed to my final edits, checking for coherence, timeline etc...
How long does it take to write a first draft?
It might take two months or twenty years. (To see a humorous blog post about the story of my first book, click here). Every story is different, and yours will never be read unless you plow through your first draft (fumbling with words feeling like you have no idea what the heck you are doing).
Once you finish your first draft, you’ll be a writer forever because you will know that you can do it!
What matters is that you are consistent with your writing time. Carve writing time every day, no matter how little, and remember that even staring at your project is part of progress.
NEVER QUIT. YOU CAN DO IT.
First drafts to me are awful, daunting nightmares. I always feel like I have all these people screaming in my head, wanting to come out all at once. Unfortunately, just like when noise is too loud, they might add up to silence… and a white page staring at you. You know better. Just write; even if it sucks. A bad word is a word you can edit later; just keep writing. Once you go through your first draft you’ll be rewarded with the amazing task of making your first book better, and you will never fear first drafts again.
Who am I to give you advice?
I am Gaia B Amman, the author of the Italian Saga (#TIS), a YA series taking place in gorgeous Italy, and talking about everything I was told is impolite to talk about ;) .
The series, indie published, is rated 4.6/5 stars on Amazon and 4.3/5 on Goodreads ^_^ All amazon #1 new releases!
The last volume, book 4, comes out November 6th!!! YAY ^_^ Book launch party in Buffalo, NY, everyone is welcome! RSVP here
The books are recommended for ages 13 and above, but most of my readers are adults.
Get the Indie Author Guide for freeI firmly believe that no one can write your story, so I set out to help other writers get their book out there ^_^
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