Thursday, August 20, 2009

Over Stuff or Under Inflate

I have a conundrum.

Since I've finished my current project, at least for the time being, I've started working on a couple of new projects.

WIP A: Is the second book to my current project (so far 15,000 words)

WIP B: Completely new book with new characters and plot (so far 5,000 words)

Sometimes the words flow like melted butter on popcorn. yesterday I wrote 2000 words in an hour. Other days I feel like I'm just throwing words on the page and hoping that later on I'll be able to put them together.

Having not written a first draft in a while, I think I've created a habit, which I'm not sure is a good one or a bad one. I'm finding I use a lot of brackets as I write. Things like (add description here), (expand more), (research this), and (check details).

For WIP A I think I have too much going on; too many plots and sub-plots. I’m finding it hard to balance it all. I'm not sure what to keep and what to get rid of.

For WIP B I have a better handle on which direction I want it to go. I'm not using as many brackets.

So here’s my question: Is it better to put in as much as you can on your first draft and cut later or write the bare minimum and add.

What do you think?

9 comments:

Lazy Writer said...

Putting more in at first and cutting later works best for me. I think it's harder to add more at the end. But that's just me.

Brit said...

I agree with Lazy, putting more in and taking it away later. I'm at a point now with my WIP where I have to go back and add. It is harder than I thought.

Patti said...

Susan: That's kind of where I started. I thought I'll add everything I think I might want the book to have.

Brit: Are you adding plot points or detail?

JKB said...

hm. I'd say, put in what you know, and make a note for later. At least that's how I've rolled the last three books, and it's not hurt me yet.

Do what *you* think is right. That way, you'll be assured of finishing it and being happy with yourself. And that is important, too!

Jessie Oliveros said...

So far I've done both. I am not sure. I think that when you write, write, write, and cut later, you have a lot more to work with and yet you are attached and it's harder to cut. With the skeleton first, then flesh-out method, you can always be building new ideas, but maybe some ideas were lost in the first place. Good question.

Patti said...

JKB: I've been doing that with project A, like I said lots of brackets.

Jessie: I agree, just write and get the concept down and then you can figure it out later.

jenniferneri said...

I write a lot more than stays, but I also need to add a lot of things later. Usually stuff that requires research and will stop me if I try to write about it.

Sounds like you need to wrestle with the direction of A more. Is it flowing for that one more?

Patti said...

Jennifer: I'm definitely having more problems with project A.

Jenna Alexander said...

I tend to put in too much. I just kind of let the words flow and not worry about trimming until later.

For me adding is tough. I had to increase a piece by about 900 words once - to get it past 5000 for submission guidelines - wow, that was tough!