Tomorrow marks the one-month interval since I desk-drawered my latest WIP. I wrote it quickly, several thousand words a day sometimes, including some significant revisions along the way. When I open the oversized FedEx envelope, y’know the ones that feel like they been glossed with pig fat, I wonder what I’ll find.

Apparently, there is a writing method called Fast Drafting that’s now en vogue. As far as I can tell, it entails slamming through a draft without stopping to revise, writing your way out of any corners your speedy narrative flow gets you into. I did the same thing when I wrote my second and third novels, which are on a disc somewhere gathering electrons. Considering how many fundamental revisions I had to work through to even make the novels readable, much less saleable (I never submitted them to a publisher), I think I’ll take a pass on Fast Draft.

I still write fast. But I reserve the right to stop and retrace my steps when currents go awry and lose the name of action.

Written by : thunderchikin

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  1. idaho_laurie February 20, 2007 at 7:29 pm - Reply

    Fast or slow, my first draft is always a mess. Alas.

  2. alixwrites February 20, 2007 at 7:33 pm - Reply

    I started out writing fast. I had this strange idea that it should take a month to write a novel, because that was how often some series came out. Never occurred to me that more than one person wrote them! Now, I’m mostly slower, though I did write the first draft of FADE TO BLACK in about a month (not by design, but because the voices in my head just wouldn’t shut up). What I have found is that it takes me 18 months to write a novel, no matter how long it takes me to write the draft. If I write the draft quickly, I spend more time revising, and if I write it slowly, I revise as I go along. I don’t think there’s a right or wrong way (The two books I drafted most quickly are the two most popular with teens, though not necessarily with critics. Extrapolate something from that!), but whichever way works best for you is The Way.

    Hope the envelope is good news!

  3. thunderchikin February 20, 2007 at 7:37 pm - Reply

    Thanks a bunch! I’m hoping I caught a couple of word faeries in there when I sealed it.

  4. thunderchikin February 20, 2007 at 7:38 pm - Reply

    Mine, too. It could be argued that my last drafts are, too. 🙂

  5. marypearson February 20, 2007 at 7:55 pm - Reply

    I love the “idea” of fast draft, but it doesn’t work for me either. Here’s to us slow drafters ; )

  6. tamarak February 20, 2007 at 8:50 pm - Reply

    I am a sloooooooow writer. The fast draft business would give me a heart attack. Or at least heart burn.

  7. newport2newport February 20, 2007 at 9:25 pm - Reply

    I’m a slow writer, too. No doubt, I could be faster, if I could get my inner editor to shush long enough for me to at least get down some basic ideas/an outline. But noooooo, it doesn’t work like that, not for me. Not yet, anyway. I’m trying to retrain myself while I’m doing a first draft of my new project.

  8. thatgirlygirl February 20, 2007 at 10:20 pm - Reply

    I’m fast until I get about 1/3 of the way through that first draft. Then I have to stop and think for weeks…months sometimes before I can plow through the rest. I like revisions much, much better.

  9. thunderchikin February 20, 2007 at 10:25 pm - Reply

    I’ve done the same thing, except I get about 1/2 way through.

  10. thunderchikin February 20, 2007 at 10:27 pm - Reply

    My inner editor is often drowned out by my characters’ voices. Then when I want the editor to speak up, it falls asleep reading and takes me with it. I’m the only person I know who falls asleep reading his own work.

  11. thunderchikin February 20, 2007 at 10:27 pm - Reply


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