1. Mikewritesfic
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    Mikewritesfic Senior Member

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    Is Your Rough Draft A Broad Stroke Or Just A Glorified Outline?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Mikewritesfic, Feb 8, 2014.

    I'm in the midst of my novel's rough draft. I started it off with the intention of having it be a broad stroke for the first and second series of revisions. Lately, it's turning into a large outline instead. I'm not sure if it's a good thing or bad just yet.

    I'm wondering if anybody has had this issue with their rough drafts before? (BTW, off subject, I've been using Scrivener for my dissertation and just recently began using it for my rough draft as well. Wow, I'm sold on it!)
     
  2. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    Are you making progress? If so, what you are doing is a 'good thing'.
     
  3. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I don't know, what's a broad stroke? My initial draft was 134K word duology (or something close, I've forgotten the exact count). But it was definitely a very rough draft.
     
  4. Mikewritesfic
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    Mikewritesfic Senior Member

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    A broad stroke is a essentially a very rough draft. A draft minus all of the details and variables that come along during the editing phase.

    I'm nine chapters and a prologue into my rough. 33k+ words. I'd put more time into it if I could but I'm defending my dissertation in April and every waking second is going into that .
     
  5. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    My first drafts are based upon a rough outline, starting from where I think the story should start, and writing toward a planned ending, with major events along the way planned out. Some are moved or dropped, with others added.

    So my first draft doesn't read like an outline. It reads list a story that needs tightening, some revision in word choice and dialogue. But so far my first drafts (novels and short stories) have been pretty complete, with less than 10% added or removed overall.
     
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  6. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I don't usually outline (I'm experimenting with using an outline for a novella right now). Instead, I just plunge in and write a first draft. Of course, during the writing of it, a ton of new ideas come to me and some of the old ones have to be discarded, so basically my first draft functions as an outline. I butcher it with gusto when I'm finished with it, write a lot of new material to fill the gaps and include the new ideas, and that's my second draft. Except, for all practical purposes, it's my first draft - the first one that tells the whole story in the order I want.

    After that, I just refine and refine.
     
  7. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    for me, the first draft of anything isn't much different from the final one, which is just an edited and polished version of the first draft... with short pieces, often just one editing round is needed...
     
  8. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    I think I'd say that a rough draft is a completed 'full' version of your story. The first one. Then you start editing. You can add or subtract elements to refine the story during the edit, but my definition of a rough draft is a full, but unpolished version. Anything less than that is probably just an expanded outline—which is not real writing, but just planning.
     
  9. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yeah, my first and only draft would fit the "full, but unpolished version" definition. By the time I get to the end, polishing is all that's needed.
     

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