August 4th, 2009

runestone

In which the writer starts another draft

Every time I finish a draft of my novel, I am absolutely certain that this time I've got it as good as I possibly can. Really, I've pounded every last wrinkle from it with a steam hammer and polished it until it's as shiny as a very shiny thing. Before I sent it out to my generous critiquers, I was damned sure that this was it. I'd made it as good as it could be. Every last word was exactly how I wanted it.

Then, of course, I got the critiques and much head-slapping occurred. How could I not have seen that? Did I really write that? I dived back in, full of enthusiasm and determination. I stripped out those unnecessary internal debates, fixed the contradictions, tightened the pace, worked on the character arcs, until finally I was done.

This time it was sure as good as it could ever be, or as I could get it.

Fast forward to now, and I've received the incredibly insightful notes from my agent. Cue more moments of revelation about how the book can be better, and a launch back in. This time it'll be as good as it possibly can be.

Expect the final, final, final draft sometime in the next millennium...

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In other news, if  you haven't already done so, pop over to congratulate aliettedb  who has just sold her debut trilogy to the Angry Robot Books imprint of HarperCollins. Anyone who's been following Aliette's short stories over the last few years will know this is going to be something special. I can't wait.