Tuesday 9 November 2010

Drafts, drafts, drafts...

I know I've posted about this before, but drafts...oh dear! Until now, I never did them. I wrote the book, went through it once, and Macmillan said yes (twice) or no (once). But now I have Agent, things are very different. "This," she said when I sent the WIP to her "is the first draft". Really? Yes. Really.

I've now been through it about three more times - does that make it four drafts? - and while I have quite enjoyed the process (partly becasue I hate saying goodbye to a book) I find more and more things to change. So when do I let go? Does anyone ever think (as I used to - oh, happy days!), that's it? Done? As near perfect as possible? Or do they feel, as I do in my new drafty state, that the more I change, the more I see that needs changing, from plot lines to using "but" twice in a sentence. Ad infinitum.

I've got to the point where I think it's as ready to go as it ever will be, but that moment when I ping it off into cyberspace will be really difficult. At least in the old days, as you parcelled it up, then walked to the post office, waited in the queue, had it weighed and stamped etc. you had time to change your mind...


  1. Is there less closure now, to sending off a weightless virtual manuscript, versus unloading a bulky package?

  2. I don't think I'll ever think a manuscript is 'done'. That's why I need deadlines.

  3. Nevets - there's some thing so sudden and irrevocable about that ping. Like when you send a tactless email and wish you hadn't. It lands immediately, and there's no way on earth (or in cyberspace) that you can get it back.

  4. Alis - I agree. But I can't cope with deadlines, either...