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SpecFictionGuy

First Draft Foibles

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I’ve got about 10 pages on my novel written but I think I have too many scenes in such a little space. Also I already have several changes I’ve noted for these first pages. 
I’m chomping at the bit to edit them, but I know I should keep at my draft to get it all down. 
Has any of you found way to suppress your inner editor so you can finish your story first?

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I have trouble too. Over time I have develop the practice of allowing myself to edit the previous scene I wrote before starting to work on new scenes. It works for me but it did take time.

The other thing I did was to allow myself to wait a3ctuons. Ie part one, part two, when they were done before going on to the next bit. .

In the end you when you finish you have a reasonable draft to carry on working with

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16 hours ago, SpecFictionGuy said:

Has any of you found way to suppress your inner editor so you can finish your story first?

I just make a note of the changes I want to make, and move on. My editor brain is happy because she knows she'll get to go hog wild on the second draft.

 

I didn't actually complete a full novel until I learned to push on and complete the first draft without going back and polishing the same words over and over. That's how much that habit was holding me back.

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In my first book, ignorance served me very well. Since I didn't know what I was doing in the first place, the inner critic didn't know she existed. Once that beast woke, desperation, (she talks more than I do, and that's saying a lot :$), forced me to keep three lists at all times:

1. What I need to change in past chapters.

2. What I need to change in future chapters. (It's not just the first draft.)

3. Small stuff I'm likely to forget some time in the future. (Every time my stuffed animals get ripped up, they are patched up with "tattoos"/crewelwork. I have to remember which one has which where.)

 

I'm on Book Two in that series. That third list should have been bigger. (Who knew I'd forget if some background character was male or female? Can you tell the difference in stuffed animals? They can and it matters to them. 😆)

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18 hours ago, Shamrock said:

I have trouble too. Over time I have develop the practice of allowing myself to edit the previous scene I wrote before starting to work on new scenes. It works for me but it did take time.

The other thing I did was to allow myself to wait a3ctuons. Ie part one, part two, when they were done before going on to the next bit. .

In the end you when you finish you have a reasonable draft to carry on working with

^^^

Practicing this method now, but only reworking Chapter 6 now, (before moving on), so can't tell yet if this works for me too.

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I think it depends on how you define "edit." If "edit" means fix spelling, punctation, and make sure you have the "right" words, skip it and go on.

 

If it means, "Oops! I killed off that character too soon," then my suggestion is to go back and make the change. Otherwise, you're heading in the wrong direction.

 

On the other hand, this may work, too. Depends on how your mind works.

7 hours ago, Spaulding said:

three lists at all times:

1. What I need to change in past chapters.

2. What I need to change in future chapters. (It's not just the first draft.)

3. Small stuff I'm likely to forget some time in the future. (Every time my stuffed animals get ripped up, they are patched up with "tattoos"/crewelwork. I have to remember which one has which where.)

 

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Sounds like everyone has some good advice. For me, I write in as big chunks as I can (ideally a chapter at a time,) as fast as I can, then I go back over that section and “polish” it up. Then I post it to the Critique Forum and have other folks weigh in on it. Then I make their suggested changes, and move on to the next one.

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18 hours ago, EBraten said:

I didn't actually complete a full novel until I learned to push on and complete the first draft without going back and polishing the same words over and over. That's how much that habit was holding me back.

This is exactly me! Some people can do this, but I definitely can’t. 

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My characters run the show. They are so loud and boisterous, and they rush on to the next scene before I have all the words down for the last one.  They punish me if I get too far behind them.

My advice is, listen to your characters, but this only works for pansters and quilters.  

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On 3/15/2020 at 5:14 PM, SpecFictionGuy said:

I’ve got about 10 pages on my novel written but I think I have too many scenes in such a little space. Also I already have several changes I’ve noted for these first pages. 
I’m chomping at the bit to edit them, but I know I should keep at my draft to get it all down. 
Has any of you found way to suppress your inner editor so you can finish your story first?

 

Yes.

 

Unintelligible words, alien grammar, and all that...

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