Finishing a First Draft

Published August 18, 2013 by LS Murphy

IT’S DONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

But it’s not. 

Yep, I’m talking about the first draft. I finished the first draft of my latest novel, currently titled NO REGRETS. I started it in the middle of June, had a few hiccups in July and August, but I finally completed it. Ahead of schedule, I might add. 🙂

So, what’s with the GIF? Well, just because the first draft is done, doesn’t mean it’s time to send it to my agent. Actually, if I sent this draft to her, she’d probably hop on a plane to slap me in person. Is it that bad? Not necessarily, but there are a lot of inconsistencies I need to fix. A few scenes I need to go back and add. And, of course, there are probably more typos than i can count.

Sometimes, writing a book is like learning how to drive, over and over again.

Each book writes differently. REAPER took forever to write. Honestly, I have no idea how many drafts I went through. My next two novels, both of which are on submission, were totally different. One was a NaNoWriMo that I completely retyped about two years after the original draft. YES, I RETYPED THE ENTIRE THING. For the better. The other came out as easy as spreading butter on corn. NO REGRETS was a battle. It took me a while to get to know my MC. She’s feisty and a little crazy. Once I found her voice, the novel flowed much better.

What’s next?

I’ll set aside NO REGRETS for about a month before I start rewriting. That’s usually the right length of time to let it settle in my head.

During that time, I have another novel to finish. It’s halfway done, and I put it aside last year because it wasn’t working. Now I know why, so I can finish it while I let the dust settle from NO REGRETS.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: I LOVE MY JOB.

Now, tell me. What are you working on?

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7 comments on “Finishing a First Draft

  • I was wondering why you’ve been so quiet lately!

    I rewrite blog posts, tweets, emails and status messages all the time before sending, I can only imagine how many times I would rewrite a whole novel just to get it close to perfect!

    I’m sure it will be worth the wait! =) I can’t wait for the day it’s officially DONE!

    Congrats =)

  • So excited for you! I’ll be honest, I think revising is more fun than writing the first draft–since there is so much experimentation and adjustment over the course of a novel as we find the right setting/voice/etc.

    Enjoy every moment!

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