by Meredith Cole
The writing process can be summed up like this for me:
- Attempt to roughly flesh out and outline my story before I start. Figure out if I have enough for a novel, or if it really needs to be something else (a short story, poem or one-act play).
- Take a deep breath and start writing. I give myself a word count and goals (I love goals!). The pages start piling up. It does not go like my outline. It never does. I run into lots of issues and attempt to write my way out of them.
- Reach the end (months later). Take another deep breath. Set aside the manuscript until I have some perspective (or can't stand waiting any longer).
- Print out the book and read it. Write all over it. Despair. Throw out huge sections and figure out what needs to be there instead. Rewrite. Repeat previous steps.
- Figure out what my book is really about. Despair. Throw out sections, revise, rewrite, repeat.
- Have someone else read it. Fix typos, make more revisions.
- Go through and look for passive voice and annoying words/phrases that I use all the time. (Must everyone shrug? Really?) Make sure I've fixed all the mistakes (Bill's name needs to stay consistent throughout the book, darn it!).