Monday, 4 July 2011

The First Draft

So on Saturday I did the first read through of the first draft of my crime novel. It was an amazing feeling just seeing it printed out. I could visibly see I had achieved something.

What did I find? I found some of it was okay. Some of it needs work. There were plot holes and time line errors. I even found one of the characters had his name changed half way through. But, behind all the flaws I can see the story. It's there. Like a stone in the rough waiting to be chipped out. I have actually written a novel. One that needs a lot of work but it's there.

What am I doing now? I'm doing the second read through but this time with a pencil in my hand. (I like working with a pencil) I'm making small edit notes on the manuscript itself plus I have a notepad where I'm making story line notes and another sheet of paper where I'm writing down the time line as I read. So far the time line for the first day is ok but I know it goes a bit squiffy later.

I'm really excited by this and I'm enjoying the process. I can't promise I will be saying that in a couple of weeks but so far, it's great!


  1. I'm at the same point. I did my first read through of a rough draft this weekend. I found name changes, hair color changes and a whole hell of a lot of typos. Like you I'll be going in with my red pen and making notes, changes and additions. Woo! Yay us! :D

  2. Congratulations! It is a wonderful feeling knowing that you completed a novel. Good luck with the read through and the editing.

  3. What an exciting milestone! You are an inspiration to me, Rebecca!

  4. I love the feeing of a pile of freshly printed paper. It's so much more real than looking at it on screen.

    Enjoy the next stage of the process!

  5. Wonderful! It's a great accomplishment. You should feel proud!

  6. Sounds like you're making progress. There's nothing quite like a print-out to help us see all the stuff that's not obvious onscreen.

  7. I'm so glad you're enjoying it at the moment. Want to do mine when you're finished!?

  8. Nice!

    When I finished my first draft, I used what I wrote to find the stuff I really liked and built the foundation with it. Then I rewrote the entire thing. When that was done, I reread everything again to pick up where things went squiffy. Now I'm revising, and it's a lot less painful, because I know (and can see) how every stage has improved the story.


  9. Well done for getting this far. The next bit will be even more rewarding because you'll see a perfect crystal emerging as each facet is shaved and polished. Enjoy!

  10. Congratulations! I applaud you for holding off on the pencil till you're second read through. I usually start tearing apart my stuff from the beginning.

  11. Congratulations! :-)

    It's great that the story shines through; you must be well on the way.

    Good luck and much courage, strength, perseverance and fun with the next stages. :-)

  12. Congratulations! I'm in the revision stage too. It's really tough and awful at times, and really wonderful too. I'm excited that I have a whole novel to work with . . . even if I need to replace large chunks.
    Keep writing/revising daily and soon, you'll have an even stronger finished novel!

  13. Congrats on finishing. What a great feeling!

  14. MBee - It's funny how things change halfway through isn't it. I didn't think it would happen. I expected to remember the people I had created. Good luck with the second read through!

    Murees - Thank you. It is a wonderful feeling.

    Thank you Astrid!

    Annalisa - Thank you. I love looking at it all printed out in it's freshly printed form. Computers are great for the writing, but I love the feel of it in my hands.

    India - Thank you. I feel really proud of myself. I can only imagine how I will feel when I get to the end of the second draft!

    J.L - You're right. I imagine I would have missed a lot more if I had attempted to do a read through on the screen.

    Sarah - You can do it!

    Misha - It's a lot of work isn't it? I feel a sense of achievement getting this far, but I can see a long road ahead as well. I'm determined to get there though!

    Rosalind - Thank you. I'm hoping I can carefully get the story out without breaking it!

    Jenny - It wasn't easy. I did it though and I'm glad I did. Now I have pencil in hand!

    K.C - Thank you. I can see it. I just have to try and get it out without breaking the entire thing!

    Tyrean - Thank you. It's a long old process isn't it. I'm determined to do it though. Wishing you lots of luck with yours.

    Susan - Thank you. It certainly is!