Every author’s process varies. Writing Processes are like assholes. Everyone has one, and some of them stink more than others. In this post I’ll share part of my process with you. I won’t share all of it, some parts are secret.
When I write, I write a skeleton. When I’m working on a novel I write 5 pages every day, without exception, until I’m done with a first draft. A first draft for me was about 100 pages in word. It was bare bones, dialogue and general stage directions for my characters.
During the first edit through, I add A LOT of detail. The manuscript will balloon to 200 pages in word. Keep in mind, I’m a succinct writer and the finished product of Memory Leak was 210 pages. I drew inspiration for the size of my Novel from Philip K. Dick. Each of his fantastic novels are between 190 and 250 pages, yet each tells a compelling story and many have been turned into movies.
The second edit adds any forgotten detail and brightens up the language. This is where I focus on the nuances of writing…add bits and pieces that affect the major themes and make sure the voice of the writing is consistent throughout.
The third edit is special. During my first two edits I take notes on little details I want to emphasize later on. In the third edit, I create what I call Circular Themes. Ever see an episode of Seinfeld? Larry David takes a seemingly minute detail in the beginning of the show and brings it back later on. The story comes full circle. In this edit I create these Circular Themes to add subtle layers underneath the main storyline. Some of the Circular Themes I created in Memory Leak were meant to be resolved in a sequel. These little details will tie the two novels together with thin threads, unnoticeable without reading both books. This way, a novel and its sequel don’t have to be connected just by a continuing storyline.
I edit one final time skimming only for typos and grammatical errors.
That’s my process! What’s yours?