Today it’s one week since I last went to work. The first of my 12-week sabbatical is nearly over, but it feels like a lot less. I’ve done a decent bit of writing, but not as much as I could have.
Technically, I’m ahead of my initial target and I expect to finish the first draft of my first story within the next three days – probably tomorrow. Most likely my targets were overly generous and will need to be adjusted. Then again, I need to factor in editing and writing the second draft and so on.
In the past I’ve usually been fairly happy with how my first drafts have turned out. I’ve taken my time on them and polished the text while writing it. I’ve tried to cut back on that this time in order to get on with the story instead. I believe this is the way to go, as it gives me a better idea of what the story really needs, but boy does this first draft suck.
“The first draft of anything is garbage” is a saying attributed to Hemingway. I’ve decided to embrace that fully and not worry that my story is a bit rubbish at the moment. There’s a good story hiding underneath all the crap and I’m pretty sure I can bring that out in one or two rewrites.
I’d like to finish the first draft before I get on with the rewriting though. That way I’ll have a better grasp of the story in its entirety and I’ll know better what to add and change and remove.
I’ve also decided to let the story sit for a bit when I’m done with the first draft. Instead of going straight back into editing I’ll begin on the second story instead and once that’s done I’ll go back and edit the first one. Then I’ll write the third, edit the second, and so on. Hopefully it’ll give me some time to detach from the stories so it won’t be too difficult cutting things out.