Wednesday, February 20, 2013

5-step writing process: drafting

Drafting is the step people usually think of when they hear "writing." As I've talked about in prior posts, the various facets--brainstorming, drafting, editing, revising, publishing--are all important parts of the writing process. Sometimes drafting gets all the credit, but it can't stand on its own. Drafting needs the other steps to be a full and complete writing process. Now, a piece of writing can be abandoned at any stage in the game. And that's okay. Literature is supposed to evoke emotions, but it doesn't have feelings of its own. So I don't feel bad for abandoning a piece and moving on.

This is the part of the process where an author can say "I wrote 3,000 words today!" And it dosen't matter how many of those words actually make it into the final.  It's about getting the words on paper.  It's about writing crappy first drafts.  It's about daring to suck.  Very few authors can pump out a masterpiece in the first draft.  (That's what editing, resing or giving up and starting over are for.)

If a person is afraid that her writing is going to suck, then she may never create. The thing is, we're all scared when we create things and put them out there. It's okay to have something that needs improvement. Just write. I will leave you with this quote by best selling author John Green: “The funny thing about writing is that whether you're doing well or doing it poorly, it looks the exact same. That's actually one of the main ways that writing is different from ballet dancing.”


  1. I hear ya on that one! My first draft is always a train wreck and sometimes, I just want to trash it altogether. Of course, a couple weeks later, I find there are things that are salvageable and I truck through a second, and a third draft even!

    Nice post! Cheers =)

    1. Sometimes I have an idea that goes no where and ends up getting incorporated (in a very different incarnation) into a story years later.