‘Ok Genius, Now Write Something!’

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Your first draft doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be written.’  I’ve heard this saying a lot when writers talk about first drafts.  At some point or another, as you sit slumped on your couch drinking tequila at 11 am and reading last weeks career section, wondering if you actually should return to teaching again, someone says this…’Don’t worry, everything will be fine, it’s only your first draft.

I never understood the truth of these bite sized motivational phrases until now.

At the moment I am reading though my incredibly rough and poorly constructed first draft.  It is terrible.  BENJAMIN LAW at the Emerging Writers Festival 2014 said this about terrible first drafts, “All writing is vomiting, then cleaning it up.”   I have nailed the vomiting part.  Now I have to learn how to clean it up.

 The following are some of the sentences I found in my first draft

  • ‘Ok Genius, Now write something!’
  • ‘Meghan I think this has all gotten well out of hand, you loved waitressing didn’t you? – please don’t make me go on!
  • ‘She (main character) hits her head now and then is sad about it.’
  • ‘Time for bed Meghan.’
  • ‘Yeah I know it doesn’t make sense.  What’s with the eyes?’
  • ‘(This problem is for future Meghan to sort out – Present Meghan is drinking now)’

I’m so glad these are making me laugh as I find them, as the only alternative is to cry.  The only thing that is helping me right now is the knowledge that other writers have felt this way about their first draft too.  I will leave you with these inspiring comments as I return once more to my own terrible first draft.

‘It’s easier to write a bad first draft and make it better than to face a blank page.’  KRISSY KEEN

Almost all good writing begins with terrible first efforts. You need to start somewhere.” ANNE LAMOTT (Yes this is a link to Facebook, I couldn’t find her website.)

Meg

by Meg

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