Saturday, June 18, 2011

Never mind!

Yesterday was a very atypical day for me, novel-wise. I didn't actually write more from where I left off the day before. Instead, I went back and read everything I had written in order to clean it up, weaved in the stuff I had just sort of air-dropped into the plot along the way, and tackled known problems that I had left myself notes about. I wound up writing probably an additional 800 words or more, but because I also cut a bunch of stuff as I went, I only ended up with a net gain of 179. But hey, I still have 11% done!
I know I had kind of committed myself to just writing straight through to the end of the first draft, but I think I'm not temperamentally capable of that. I used to go back and rewrite everything I'd done before each day before continuing on the story, which resulted in a really great first couple of pages which then progressively deteriorated. I'm not doing that this time. But I do think I need to do a quality-control rewrite every 10,000 words or so, just to ensure that the tone and the logic and plotting remain consistent throughout.

What really shocked me as I reread my first few scenes was this: they weren't in need of that much rewriting. I did completely strike one paragraph and I rewrote the first three paragraphs of the novel, but after that, it was just a lot of smaller tweaks. I had really expected to have to do more rebuild, when in fact what was needed was mostly finishing work.

And today my friend and writing partner (on yet another novel project) read the whole thing and declared that it is, in fact, not even close to crap. So, yay! I can stop driving myself batshit crazy and get back to work. Several other people have offered to read my draft, so I have to add some more to it in order to make it worth their time. :D

And by the way, I feel I should apologize to anyone who actually follows this blog for the fact that it reads like it should be titled "Leanne: Portrait of a Middle-Aged Neurotic." But hey, they do say to write what you know.

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