Wednesday, August 26, 2009

First draft

Yesterday was a looong day at the hospital. It went well. For those who don't know, my boy has been having some health issues and the doctors are trying to find answers. Answers. We need them. Hopefully we'll be getting some soon. And hopefully these answers don't lead to more questions, just solutions. :)

Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers. They give me so much comfort. I was at the coffee shop down from Chapel Hill hospital, reading your comments. I smiled! There we were, at the hospital for the millionth time (no exaggeration here) and I was smiling. :)

As I was writing yesterday, I found myself revising as I wrote my first draft. YIKES! That is such a big no-no for me. I like to get it down. Just let it gush out of me. Then when the time comes, and come it will, revise.

How do you do it? Do you revise as you write? Does that work for you? I know some writers swear by revising as they go along. I have done it both ways. I prefer to just let the words come. I can edit them later.

Upcoming interview with our own Tess Hilmo. She is going to tell us what the past few agented months has been like. It will be so much fun to hear her talk about it. :) Stay tuned.


  1. Can't wait for Tess's interview! And I'm the kind of person who gets the book down and then revises. That doesn't mean I don't go back and change small mistakes or anything that may cause major problems in upcoming chapters. I hope you get somewhere in finding out what's wrong with your son. Good luck!

  2. I write and then I revise. It's what works for me. I think if I did it the other way around I'd never finish the first draft.

    Here's hoping you get the answers/solutions you need!


  3. I pray your son get's back to feeling better quickly! I usually spill my first draft out of me then go back and clean up the mess ;)

  4. BJ: Thanks. I hope we get somewhere too. Right now it seems like we're going nowhere fast.

    Yeah I like fixing small problems, but not revising, revising. :)

    Scott: Thanks friend. The solutions are what I'm looking for.

    That was in a song that my favorite all time singer-musician sang about years ago. Solutions not problems. The singer-musician? John Lennon. :)

  5. I try to never revise while I write that first draft. Which makes my first draft totally inconsistent. But normally complete.

  6. T. Anne: Thanks for your prayers. I love, love, love them. Cleaning up the mess is what I do best. Had A LOT of practice! :)

  7. PJ: I love how you put it. Normally complete. I'll have to remember that the next time I'm tempted. :)

  8. I'm so glad you have things that make you smile as you deal with difficult times. I'll keep praying for you!

    I try to make my story as good as I can the first time around, this sometimes includes revising. Oftentimes after my first draft, I usually only end up adding more detail and fixing punctuation, etc. instead of doing major revisions.

  9. Cindy: I'm jealous. I need to come over and watch you at work. :) Thanks so much for your prayers. It feels wonderful. :)

  10. So wonderful to read that you smiled, Robyn!

    I do it both ways too. Sometimes I revise as I write a first draft. Sometimes I don't. I think it usually depends on my speed. If I just have a story pouring out of me, I let it pour out. But, sometimes a story is slower to develop, and since I don't want to not do anything with it, I'll revise what I've written before while I wait for more inspiration. Or, if I have a good revision that I'm worried I'll forget about, then I'll take the time to revise too. I think any way works as long as you don't feel like you are inhibiting yourself.

  11. Davin: Yes, it felt good that in even the midst of all that I could smile.

    I see what you are saying. I too will get something down if I feel it is really good and I won't want to forget it.

    I guess both ways can work. I didn't throw out the revisions I did. They were really good. I felt like it slowed me down though. I didn't get all the writing done that I wanted to get done. :)

  12. Robyn, I hate revising as I write except for the times in which I've been separated from my manuscript. Sometimes, revising helps to put me back in the story.

  13. I wrote my first book like a runaway train that poured out chapter after chapter (although I do clean up, too, as I go). Now I'm rewriting it. I think it can work to do it either way. If you have inspiration pouring out, just let it! We all know what it's like to stare at a computer screen on days when the muse flees. But it is also good to have a plan where you're going so you don't waste a lot of time off-track. I love what the previous commenters said, too.

    Wishing answers, solutions and peace to your family. I admire you for keeping up your writing and blogging despite the uncertainty and stress you face.

  14. Amy: I agree that revising that soon would be useful in that situation. Great idea. I will definitely try that when I've been a part from my baby for any length of time. :)

    Tricia: Thanks for the wonderful words. And for wishing solutions to us. That would be my lifetime Christmas present.

    But as to the revising as I go I love reading all the comments. I have learned something today. And I have learned it isn't so bad to revise as you go along as long as you don't get stuck in that. I remember when I anguished over my first paragraph in my novel before I was even writing the 5th chapter of the rough draft. :) Live and learn? :)

  15. I do both depending on how I feel the writing is going. If it's going badly or I'm not sure about story I just keep writing. If I'm pretty sure about story I'll go back and edit a couple of times before moving on.

    I hope your son feels better soon.

  16. Patti: Both is what I've been doing. But I wonder if it is stopping the flow. I feel like I want to get everything down and then see where I'm at. But the good news is, my first three chapters look GREAT. Thanks for your wishes about my son. I appreciate it very much. :)

  17. Yikes, I didn't realize you were still there with your son. I'll be praying for you guys tonight.

    I do both. I write, the next day I look over what I wrote the day before, then I write more, and so on.
    Then I do revisions/edits after the whole thing is out. It's an exhausting process. LOL

    I'm looking forward to Tess's interview!

  18. *hugs*

    I hope they find some answers too. You're in my thoughts and prayers. :)

    I'm in the middle. I don't mess with grammar or make sure every sentence sparkles on my first round, but my first draft is pretty much my final draft content-wise. I polish and tweak afterwards, but that's how I work. :D Can't wait to hear about Tess. :D

  19. Jessica: Thanks so much for your prayers. I really mean that. They mean the world to me. I like looking over what you wrote the day before. If I do that then I start messing with it and nothing else gets done. :)

    Danyelle: *hugs back to Danyelle* Thanks for your prayers and thoughts. I love, love, love them. And I need, need, need them. Much! Yeah, content wise, I'd say the first draft is the final draft for me too. I like hearing how other writers work. It's nice to get opinions. Then I might try your way. :)


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