My Brain is Fried

As you know, or maybe you don’t, I’m feverishly working on Resuscitation, the sequel to They Never Die Quietly. Every writer approaches writing differently. Some work with comprehensive outlines, some write by the seat of their pants, some set word quotas every time they sit in front of the computer screen, some write loosey-goosey first drafts, then beef them up during the editing process, and some just go with the flow. 

One thing I try to do is to write just about every day, and I try to write at least 1,000 words. As you might imagine, there are times when the old brain just ain’t cooperating and I have trouble putting two sentences together. And there are other times when the words are just pouring out of my head. For the last week, my creative juices runneth over.   

Over the last week, I’ve written just over 7,000 words. As of ten minutes ago, I’m at 66,576 words. Now because it’s a first draft, it might be total crap. Well, maybe not total crap, but nothing worthy of publication. However, once I write, “The End”, I can take a breath and perform a comprehensive rewrite. And for me, rewriting is easier than writing. 

Look at it this way. Compare it to building a house. First you lay the foundation and block, install the deck, frame the house, put in the windows, and put on the roof. Now that your “shell” is complete, you can install the interior studs, insulate, install electrical and plumbing, hang and finish drywall, paint, lay your floors, install the fixtures. It’s the same with writing. When everything is done, you’ve got a finished product. 

Once the first draft is complete, you add description, tighten dialogue, flesh out the narratives, add a few plot twists, clean up the language, check the sentence structure.

So, at this point I’m reasonably happy with my progress thus far. All I can hope for is a continued flow of those creative juices. 

 However, it’s Friday. My brain is toast. And I need a nice glass of red wine.

2 Comments

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2 responses to “My Brain is Fried

  1. Ken

    I agree re-writes are much easier, but there is a caveat. They are easier as long as you don’t get too anal, and start freaking out about everything you have just written.

    However, I am total free-flow writer. I let the words pour out and then I go back and edit. Of course if you have read my blog then you know even my edits are hack jobs at best.

    I rarely if ever use an outline with the exception of when I have a huge post to write and no time to write it. I will jot down the bullet points and go back and write the post around those key facts. Mostly I do this because I am pretty convinced I am suffering from the early onset of Alzheimers and will ultimately forget what it was I wanted to write about.

    • Daniel

      As far as I’m concerned, free-flow is the only way to fly. However, when you’re tackling a full-length novel without at least a loosely crafted outline, it’s easy to get lost in the words and forget who did what and when. So, for me, I write the first draft as quickly as possible, and then go back and flesh it out.

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