Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The 5 stages of drafting

1.  Denial - "This is going to be so easy.  So much easier than the last book."
2.  Anger - "Why isn't this easier?! %&*%&^$$^"
3.  Bargaining - "If I get another 1k written, it will get easier and then I can write a kissing scene."
4.  Depression - "This draft will be horrible.  I've learned nothing about writing a book.  My time would be better spent in the fetal position, eating my hair."
5.  Acceptance - "Yep, this draft will probably be crap, but that's okay.  Crap can be fixed."

I'm at about 30k in book 2, but happy to report I'm at stage 5 of drafting!


  1. Number three made me LoL. :)

    Is eating hair an actual thing? Whoa...

    Good list! I think I'm mostly able to get to number five pretty easily, but I drift into number two from time to time.

  2. *sigh* You're gonna make me give the speech aren't you?

    *drags out soap box*

    1st drafts are not crap writing; they're raw writing. If you shine raw materials, you get precious stones or shiny metal. If you shine crap, you either get crappy hands or you get a novelty paperweight.

    IT IS NOT OKAY TO WRITE CRAP. (And I don't believe you do, so there.)


    I'll agree with you on the shock/disappointment/frustration that comes when you realize writing a sequel isn't easier than the primary novel. (Nor is it anything like simply fanficcing one's own work... drat.)

  3. Yes yes yes yes YES. I actually told myself #3, word-for-word, about two hours ago. I've written 400 words since then.

    I'm 46K into this draft. How come you're all the way through all five stages, but only 30K in? I'm jealous!

  4. Not so fast, Josin. I actually stopped, typed "WRITE MIDDLE" and skipped to writing the end. :)

  5. I'm at step 4. I wish I could go ahead and skip to 5.

  6. I get to 5 pretty fast, actually, when I have an idea I love so much I know I'll actually stick with it to the end. I'm totally okay with the first draft being pretty bad. First draft is where I have fun and have to type so fast I keep up with the ideas in my head. But don't get me wrong, there is plenty of 1-4s mixed in there too.

    Oh, and I totally believe a good portion of it could be called "crap". But I'll clean that crap up later. :)

    Awesome post!

  7. I actually love rough drafting. It's a stage where anything goes. You can explore subplots, dialogue and backstory without pressure. It's the revising that drives me insane. I'm always petrified that I'll ruin a manuscript beyond repair with my revisions.