Hey bloggers! Today we’re participating in the July blog chain for TCWT, which asks: What’s one thing you wish you knew when you started writing?
We’re going to keep this short, since there are probably a million things we could talk about!
Firstly, when we first started writing at the age of nine, we likely didn’t know that all first drafts suck. There are no ifs, ands, or buts. First drafts will make you want to cry–and if you can muster up the courage to make that manuscript better than it started, you’re on the right track. The best way to get through the awful first draft is to just write. Write whatever it is you planned (or didn’t plan, for that matter). There are some parts that will actually be good (score!) and some … not so much. But that’s okay. No one has to see your first draft but YOU, and YOU can fix it. Show it to CPs, edit like the wind, and you’ll likely salvage something great from your MS.
Secondly, I wish we’d known some simple grammar techniques. This one’s pretty dull, but everyone has to know grammar. Writing a book is one of the BEST learning experiences out there, because you get to experiment with your writing voice, and better yet, improve your grammar! Every time I write a book, I learn so much more. Writing is an experience, guys! And grammar is a big part of it.
Lastly, I wish we had attempted to plot. Yes, our nine-year-old selves were such pantsers that we barely finished books we’d started. Since we co-write, we’d just think of a cool plot line and say, “Hey. How about you write a chapter and i’ll write another few pages, and we’ll just come up with stuff from there?” Haha. That did not work. Seriously, everyone should attempt to outline or plot out events in their books. I’ve also heard a lot of talk about writing a query before completing your MS. (Crazy, but … it makes sense.) It helps eliminate sub-plots and keeps your plot on track!
Whew, that was a lot of stuff. All in all, writing is a huge learning experience, and i’m sure there’s still a lot of stuff to learn from here!
Thanks TCWT for allowing us to participate in this month’s blog chain!