Wednesday, October 13, 2010

WIPW: Scrapping the Rough Draft

Last night I was lying awake thinking about my WIP. I have written almost 45k a this point in the rough draft, but I'm still pretty dissatisfied with the whole thing. Now, I really like the premise, and since I added a paranormal subplot I like it even better. However...

Right now the structure is pretty flawed. I feel like there needs to be at least one more subplot, something that will give my main character some more emotional rapport (I'm thinking of adding another friendship/drama and possibly another romantic interest early on) and something to think about beyond the main plot of the story, which has to actually get slightly buried on her list of priorities.

Anyway, I was contemplating the whole thing and all the work I'm going to have to do to restructure and fix the character arcs, and then I realized--I really don't even like the tone of the book. As I've been writing it, I've realized how much I want it to be a darker, Asiany/Gothic (weird combo?) story. Murder, plots, blackmail, monsters, masks. I want a sort of bizarre wonderfulness that has darkness and sparkle at the same time. It's the kind of book that I could write while listening to Phantom of the Opera or Poets of the Fallen. But right now it's more of a glittery fairy tale.

I don't know if I can do what I want to with this book, but I at least want to try.

So basically I decided it would be easier to throw everything out and start over, trying to get the mood right and the characters right from the beginning. But all isn't lost! I figured out where I want to go and who everybody is with that first draft, as awful as the thing was on paper. And who knows? Maybe I'll be able to salvage a few chapters.

Has anybody else successfully thrown out a first draft?


  1. Definitely know where you're coming from. I just did the same toss-out last week with my current WIP, though not that massive of a word count! It's tough to do, but very necessary sometimes. I say do'll be free of those bad words and maybe you're writing will flow like a waterfall!

  2. @Jamie I'm hoping that starting over (after breaking creative ground with the suck version) will really let me write the story I've been meaning to write all along.

  3. i haven't really thrown out my first draft, but i've changed so much it feels like it... the first fifth of so (well not the first chapter- that's completely reworked) is about the same- but the other 4/5ths are so very different. i keep going back to the original to see if there is anything i can use... but it feels like i've thrown it all away! at least you realized this at 45,000 instead of 115,000 like me!
    btw- i think the tone you aim to create would be gorgeous! :)

  4. Ack! Your RSS feed got deleted from my reader. Sorry for the lack of reading/commenting.

  5. @aspiring_x I know exactly what you mean about throwing so much out that eventually it feels like you did start over. And thanks for the boost about the tone--I'm really hoping I can hit the right balance with it!

  6. @Jaimie I wondered where you'd gone! :-P


Have something to say? Leave a comment!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...