Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Write, Trash, Rewrite

So now I'm finding I need to do at least one complete rewrite per story.

It takes me at least a draft or so to see what the story is like and to flush out some interesting details. Then I can go back, choose a good POV, develop a voice, and let her rip.

I've also noticed that a short story can really only hold one idea. So I'm learning if I want to write a story about a big giant lizard, I don't want to also write about re-animating the dead. There simply isn't enough room.

Even so, I'm working more efficiently than my 10 draft past. What I did at the beginning was write the story, then go back and rewrite using it as a template. However, this locks in a certain voice and structure that may not be necessary.

With my novel in progress, at around 15,000 words, I've come to the conclusion that my main character is boring. It's a problem when the secondary characters are more intereting (actually, there are two main characters, but the primary one bores me). So what am I going to do?

Trash and rewrite.

The question is, will I be more successful this way? Right now, I've still had a grand total of 0 acceptances (althought I do have a short list, so that is something).

On the bright side, 1 acceptance will improve my rate by infinity!


  1. Great decision! Also, the more you write, the more you hone your writing skills.

  2. A sound process. I like to "vomit" my first drafts and clean them up later -- that way I usually have something to work with. And hey, congrats on your May Marionette WIN!

  3. Sounds like you're on the right lines to me. I'm like Milo : bash out the first draft and worry about tidying it up later. Trashing can be painful but it ends up worth it in the end.

    Congrats on the May Marionette anyway!

  4. Congratulations on meeting your May W1S1 goals!

    I thought you'd been invited to submit to a pro anthology coming up? Am I mixing you up with someone else in W1S1?

    At any rate, keep writing and revising, and you can only get better and closer to that first sale!

  5. I am also a "vomit" the first draft and clean it up later kinda writer. It takes me nearly a month to vomit something, and another month to clean it up. :) And I also struggle with the whole secondary-character-is-more-interesting syndrome. I think write, trash, rewrite, may be a little harsh...perhaps write, improve, rewrite. :) Er...or something. Just good to know I'm not the only one who does this.