Drafting Success – Day 148

Found myself lost in a double-entrendre this weekend. As I was rewriting, I literally got the feeling of “drafting”, i.e. being pulled along by the vehicle in front. So instead of banging out, say 1,500 words in an hour, I was zipping through, say 3,000.

It’s actually a great feeling. As you may remember, I had to write a couple of pre-first-draft scenes. Those are done now, and I’m navigating through charted waters. What a difference! There are little tweaks to make because of the way the story has changed and evolved along the way. For example, one character references an event in the first draft that hasn’t yet happened in the second. Luckily, I’ve been able to seamlessly switch around the dialogue, etc. and continue the story.

Of course, I’ve written second drafts for many other pieces in the past. But this was somehow different, partly (I’m guessing) because of the size of the work, and partly because of the time between drafts. It’s been about five months now since I read these words — talk about letting it “sit” awhile!

One thing I’ve been guilty of quite a bit though is re-reading too much. While writing the first draft, I could avoid this altogether by simply not allowing myself to re-read anything. (Okay, you caught me – there were a couple of times that I cheated. But those were for very specific reasons that worked out in the long run…)

For the second draft though, now that I’m crafting the actual story, I need to re-read to make sure flow, continuity, etc. are all working.

The other thing I’m having trouble with is maintaining The Voice. There are times when it simply gets in the way or, as is happening right now, there is so much dialogue that the “narrator’s” voice isn’t making that much of an appearance in this scene (it’s written in first person, but the narrator writes differently than from how he talks in the story… you’ll see what I mean soon enough). That being said, I’m not sure how much of a difference it will make — I’ll know better in the third draft, methinks.

The other hiccup was trying to describe a sunset. It is a lot more difficult than you may think, especially in The Voice. It didn’t help that I was writing (re-writing, actually) that passage during the “bad” writing session. I suspect I’ll be rewriting that passage several (many) more times before I’m done.

Overall though, I was very happy with my progress this weekend. I have another busy week this week, so I’m not sure how far I’ll get – but I’ve already blocked out time again next weekend…

I’ll be posting before then though.

~Graham

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