Draft One of Novel 4 was completed on Saturday 18th August. Woopla!
Now, comes the tough bit of redrafting. I have to detach myself from the words, content and in some cases the plot totally and approach the novel with fresh eyes. Only then will I see the drib from the drab, and the ace from the jokers.
Although Draft One took 9 weeks (a lot longer than the original 5 I’d scoped out – shame on me), I’m putting 3 weeks down for redrafting. One chapter per weekday, and four over the weekend. Yup, yup, yup – I can do it.
Some important stages of redrafting “for me” are:
- Read other novels to remind yourself of what works
- Remove unnecessary adjectives
- Tighten the Prose
- Watch for any dangerous head-hopping
- Ensure the reader knows who is speaking, moving and doing what
- Can I picture the scene from the words rather than my thoughts?
- Don’t introduce too many characters all at once
- End each chapter with a damn fine hook
- Ensure consistency with phrases, terms, acronyms and descriptions
- Keep one format of numbers, ie: 100, or One hundred.
- Maintain the conflict and build to a thumping piledriver end
- Try to bring full circle Chapter One to the last
- Don’t overuse hyphens
- Don’t have too much: Jumping, he did – Smiling, he did…
- Remove all purple prose and waffle… ptooie…
- Remember your readership – if your novel is aimed at the young market, then watch out for slang they won’t understand, curses, swearing or elongated elaborate words.
Oh yes – I’m pumped for redrafting.
Stay focussed people. Stay focussed. After the redrafting comes the review, beta-read, and the editing… and then… the submission.