Day 4 – “D” Drafting (The First Stages)
As I alluded to in my post on Character Development, I am a tad obsessive about outlining (a topic I will discuss in further detail later in this challenge). What happens when that stage of the writing process ends? One can only outline, plot, and plan so much. When I feel that I have reached the stage when I have developed enough of a road map to start building my first draft on, I start to write version number one.
My first drafts change and evolve so much throughout the process of bringing my sketches to life. I often find myself going back and modifying previous sections to match the direction the story goes. One of the things I outline prior to writing the first version, is a chapter layout to help me piece together sections as I write them. I rarely write any first drafts of chapters in order. I write them as I’m particularly inspired to write on said subject, tying them together in the editing stages.
Bouncing back and forth between chapters, between sections, as I go is certainly not the most efficient way to write (as opposed to writing chronologically). I’ve found that if I force myself to write out the events of the story in order, and I force myself to write a scene I’m not truly interested in at that time (say a perky scene when I’m in a shitty mood), I have to rewrite the entire section so it comes off as authentic later on.
I’m typically not as concerned with grammar, syntax, transitions, etc. during my first drafts. Worrying about all of these elements early on affects my ability to genuinely convey and thoroughly detail the events and experiences. I write to get the story down on paper. I write to get that first version out and presented in a manner that I can modify and morph into my vision at a later date.
Are there any particular processes you follow when you are writing your first drafts? Do you write in any particular order, or do you write what feels right at the time and later piece your stories together? Do you worry about the more technical elements of writing as you go along, or focus on editing these things later on?