Creating a first draft

Creating first drafts- my reflections (Opinion only)

Inspiration comes as a complete surprise. In my head, visual images roll and collide with words. Characters speak. When this occurs, the ideas need to flow and come out of my head. There’s no time to worry about sentence flow, correct word choice and grammar. So, I find a quiet space and get the ideas down quickly.

Do the ideas come in time-sequenced order? No. It may be an event or a description that eventually finds a place in the middle or end of my manuscript or no place at all except on a page in my first draft folder. So, I forget editing and proofreading. I can seek professional help to fix the technical mistakes later in one of the many drafts.

On occasions, characters collide, and settings cross over. I recognize the voice or scene change immediately and, instead of blocking a fleeting idea, I have four notebooks for first draft writing. Three for the first drafts currently worked and one extra just in case a new character is revealed. When the characters speak, I listen. It’s more important to get them out of my head.

Finally, while fun to write, first drafts are un-publishable, although one may be a diamond in the rough. However, it’s me alone, and no one else is going to read it. Not yet.

When the ideas cease to flow, that’s when I know it’s time for a break. What comes next? I have to work hard to finish it. Karen Dunsmore




Pencils and notebooks
First drafts- the old fashioned way