January 22, 2013

Writing Tip: Let It Be Crappy

My new novel: The Ones You Left Behind
I'm working on my second novel and I'm doing it differently this time around (hopefully this one won't take eight years). I'm just plodding through the first draft, trying not to go back and edit as I write, which is a little like having a plate of chocolate truffles nearby and being told not to eat them. I'm a serial editor.
The thing is, I want to get the story down and find out what happens and meet all the characters, and then I'll start revising. I know the first draft will have lots of problems and will possibly be pretty crappy, but that's just the foundation. Later I'll go back and fill in all the holes, smooth out the wrinkles and add the details.
As I was writing the other day I needed to go back and see what happened the last time two characters met and I saw that I had set up a scenario that I completely forgot about - I introduced a character I didn't remember and have no idea what I planned to do with her. Hah! The writing process is so interesting.
Did you know that authors don't know all the characters? People just pop up and introduce themselves.
I suppose that's not true of all writers, some make elaborate outlines and know what will happen every step of the way but I like letting the story tell itself. I like being surprised.
So, I just wrote this and really like it. Tell me what you think.

Sometimes people come into our lives just when we need them most, and isn’t that a treasured thing? They come from seemingly nowhere at the exact right moment to add something that’s missing or to help us with something that seems insurmountable. Perhaps sometimes we’re not open to it and they go away without making an impression but if we’re very, very lucky our lives are richer for meeting them, no matter how long they stay in our lives.

Okay, time to get back to work now...

No comments: