Sometimes you just have to scrap a thing to make that thing better…
Way back in November 2013 I started my novel writing adventure by taking part in National Novel Writing Month where 10s of thousands of people take the challenge to write a first draft of a novel in 30 days. Just you and your chosen format (pen and paper, typewriter, computer, stone and chisel, etc.) and a goal of 50,000 words. I failed to reach that goal but I did get something out of it…a story.
A story that I thought would be alright, a story that didn’t need too much tweaking or re-writing. I just thought this thing needed a few more scenes and I would call it done…I was wrong.
Three years later after countless re-reads and some editing I decided to scrap a good chunk of it. And by good chunk I mean at least 99% of it. Terrifying? Yes, but something that needed to be done. So far I’ve managed to re-write and edit the first chapter to where I felt it was good and it’s a lot better than its predecessor.
Why did I decide to start over from practically scratch? There were a lot of things that I’d previously written for it that weren’t working out. Certain scenes and characters were out of place. Not that they wouldn’t exist somewhere just not here. For instance, my male MC didn’t have much of an active role in the story and that didn’t sit well with me. He needs to be a part of it with the female MC and not just a bystander that interjects once in awhile. I’m working to fix that.
The biggest problem with it, the main reason for the re-write, is that it’s supposed to be scary. It’s a horror story after all and if I’m not getting scared writing it, I’m pretty sure that anyone reading it wouldn’t be scared either. That’s going to take some time and research to develop my own voice and style.
This is going to take some time so come along for the journey that will take you on a roller coaster ride of triumphs and defeats. The word count on the right has changed to reflect what’s happening now.
Have you ever had to scrap a thing to make that thing better?