Introduction of the First Draft Series
Founder, Steam Powered Dreams
Authorpreneur, Editor, and Publisher
Writing the first draft takes a lot. It’s not enough to just have an idea, you need to understand structure, language, syntax, and, in the case of fiction, what makes a good story. However, more than anything else, you need perseverance.
First Draft is a series where we’ll delve deep into the process of writing, going from an idea to a finished draft. We won’t spend much time on mechanics, but rather look at some of the less talked about topics, such as the benefits of outlining or pantsing, finding time to write, pitfalls to avoid, and more.
This is a 9-part series that will be released twice a week over the next few months. Here is what you can expect, and when:
Pantsing, as it’s commonly known, is simply writing your story without planning it out. There’s no outline or Story Pulse (more on that later). You just the story unfold as you write and go with what feels “right”. This article will shed some light on why this may be the best approach for you.
Pantsing can be a great tool for any writer, but outlining your story has many benefits as well. This article will take a contrasting look towards outlining over pantsing, letting you make the decision on which one is right for you.
By now you must be wondering what Story Pulse is. Simply put, it’s the lifeblood of your story. It’s a cross between pantsing and outlining that will leave even the most devout pantser both intrigued and awe inspired. Ok, that might be a bit dramatic, but this article takes a look at what Story Pulse is and how it combines all the benefits from both pantsing and outlining.
Part 4: Writing Logistics
One of the most asked questions I receive revolves around length. “How long should a chapter be? What about a scene or a whole book?” While there is no one hard rule for this, we wanted to create a definitive guide to be able to share when these questions came up.
Part 5: How To find time to write
This is the ultimate question, isn’t it? It’s never easy to find enough time to write unless you’re lucky enough to be able to write for a living, and even then it’s not easy. But there are ways to make the most out of the few free minutes you have here and there and this article provides a few tips on how to do just that.
Part 6: Writing Pitfalls to Avoid
Now we’re getting into the nitty-gritty of writing. These pitfalls are sure to trip you up if you’re unaware, taking precious time away from actually writing and finishing your work. Be mindful of these potential hazards and you’ll be that much more productive.
Part 7: When Should I Worldbuild?
Ah, worldbuilding. Some writers love it, while others would rather be doing almost anything else. This article examines worldbuilding from a practical point of view and tries to help you determine the best time to make it your focus.
Part 8: What Makes A Great Character?
This is another common question. In fact, many books have been written on this very subject. This article is somewhat of a crash course in character development, getting you started in creating well rounded, believable characters.
Part 9: Sex, Drugs, and Alcohol in Writing
We end the series with a real talk about using somewhat taboo subjects in your writing. Many writers have fears about incorporating these themes, fearing they may be judged, but it’s important to remember the writer is not the character, and vice versa. Still, some caution is due, and this article helps lay that out.
The completion of First Draft will bring a close to our larger, Full Draft series. But don’t worry! We already have some amazing new posts coming, ones we’re sure you won’t want to miss.
If you haven’t done so yet, also check out our Second Draft series where we talk about editing, beta readers, and other important topics, as well as the Final Draft series, where we talk about publishing, marketing and more!