Having come nearly halfway into the first draft I’ve been working on since this spring, I am starting to see what I’m doing better now compared to my earlier attempts. And while I am nowhere near finishing I still feel it proper to acknowledge the lessons learned, mainly to keep myself from forgetting them.
It feels like crap.
And that’s alright. It’s a first draft, it gets to be crap.
Don’t look back.
Don’t even read what’s been written earlier on unless you have to look something up, the risk of getting stuck in editing or feeling bad because it’s ‘crap’ (see above point) is too big. Just carry on, move forwards. There will be time to edit later.
Work on it every day.
As far as possible, that is. I don’t have a word quota but I do have the goal of doing something with it every day, to keep it moving and avoiding getting stuck.
Ignore bad thoughts.
The thoughts will come, so one better learn to just ignore them. Right now it doesn’t matter what the end result will be, if it’ll get published or not, if it’ll get good reviews or not, so whatever that nagging voice says at the back of your head is really irrelevant. It might be right, it might be wrong, it doesn’t matter. The only thing that matters in there here and now is carrying on.
Learning while doing.
Don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Take note of them and try to do better next time. The more lessons learned during the first draft, the less risk of doing them again during the second draft, no? Don’t beat yourself up over the mistakes, just look at them and learn.
IT STILL FEELS LIKE CRAP!
AND THAT’S ALRIGHT! KEEP GOING ANYWAY!
Words of wisdom? Hah. No, not really. Once I reach the end of the first draft I might re-do this little list, finding what I thought today lacking! We shall see. For now I am strangely happy with where I am in the writing process. I see faults and things that need to be changed, so much that needs to be rewritten entirely and even characters that might need to be removed or added. I see it and know I’ll have to fix it. Later, that’ll be for the second draft. There is no use editing the start a thousand times when there’s no middle or end to carry on with. So it’s fine.
Now… dinner. Let’s see if that chicken curry pie is even edible.