Monday, 23 April 2012

The First Draft...

Happy Monday, friends!

Today I finished my second book. Well, the first draft of it any ways. You see first drafts are like trying to suck blood from a vampire for me. A long drawn out process that has me pulling my hair and drinking way too much coffee.

I hate them.

There is so much planning. Plot, subplot another subplot, characterization, dialogue, that makes sense and the list goes on and on and on. It is all so overwhelming at times I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. There were times I took Ol’ Hemmingway at his words, and I wrote after a few too many, only to wake the next day to a mess of litature so bad I still cringe.

Why do I despise the first draft?

You see, friends I have a bit of a confession...
I end up writing half a novel before the real story comes to me, and I have to start all over again.

First let me point out, much to my doctors concern the voices in my head mean no harm, they are just aiding the story along.

When a story comes forth inside my wacked out head, I take a few weeks to process the possibilities that can come from it. If I feel it’s believable and I can write it. This means I have passion for it. I create the characters, delve into the plot and subplot, and I write a chapter outline. Then I rub my hands together and get to work.

I write, and write and write.

I almost get to 30,000 words too. This is two months of writing every day. Then I start to notice one of the minor or major characters more than before, and a whole new story will come to me. But like the crazed moron I am, I ignore the voice in my head telling me to write it. What can I say us Italians are stubborn as heck.

Instead I will go on and write another couple thousand words before the character will stop me. This is no joke, friends. I cannot write another word in the book. My mind has gone blank. The plot I so articulately planned has disappeared and the passion that was once there is gone. I am stuck with the lunatic in my head demanding I tell his/her story!

What is a writer to do?

Well,I listen to the lunatic and viola! I have created a story that I cannot stop writing, a tale where the passion in me grows. I begin to feel the plight of my characters, and I struggle to solve their problems. I stay up late and wake up early to write their story. I cry when a character I love has died. I laugh when my uppity protagonist trips and falls into the lake. I get angry when the antagonist hurts the characters I care so much about, and I weep when the last word is written.

I’ve taken myself on another journey; one at times I thought would never end, and I created a story I am proud of. I’ve become friends with my new characters and when I am finished all edits and revisions, I know I will miss them.

“Write drunk; edit sober.” Ernest Hemmingway