?

Which one describes you best?

  1. I write a complete first draft and never get writer's block

    21.4%
  2. I write a complete first draft and sometimes get writer's block

    21.4%
  3. I write a complete first draft and often get writer's block

    3.6%
  4. I "edit as I go" and never get writer's block

    10.7%
  5. I "edit as I go" and sometime's get writer's block

    32.1%
  6. I "edit as I go" and often get writer's block

    10.7%
  1. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Writer's block and "perfectionist" vs "from start to finish" drafting

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by 123456789, Jan 21, 2014.

    I'm trying to see if the people on WF experience any differences between the two methods of writing, one being writing from start to finish without (or with minimal) looking back, and the other being perfecting your first draft bit by bit as you go. It might be a stupid question but we'll see.
     
  2. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    There's no option for 'none of the above'. I wrote out a complete first draft, now I'm editing as I go as I turn it into a novel and I do run into stumbling blocks but not writer's block because I just skip those parts and come back to them later.
     
  3. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    I always write a first draft of something straight through and then go back to edit. For me, that's the best way to ensure I finish something.
     
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  4. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I wish I had that tenacity. Seriously, I do. I'm #6
     
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  5. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    There is an option for that. Option one!
     
  6. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Ok so you're option one also
     
  7. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    I took that to mean whether I ever stop because I'm stumped or having trouble writing the next paragraph. I do sometimes get "blocked" in a story, where I have to stop writing and set it aside for a bit, but I don't generally go back and do any editing on what I've already done until I have the first draft complete.
     
  8. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    I used to be horrible about editing while I wrote, and instead of getting anything finished I had a bunch of beginnings that were well edited :)
     
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  9. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    OHHHH, my apologies. You're right, then, you'd be sometimes, in that case. Sorry for the confusion.


    @GingerCoffee , you should check option one, though
     
  10. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    OK, I voted #1 but it only covers how I began this piece. Option 4 applies to the stage of writing I'm in now.
     
  11. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Stumbling blocks or writer's block? You bring up a good point.

    For the purpose of this poll, let's define writer's block as a complete halt in one's writing. Skipping scenes does not count.
     
  12. xanadu
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    xanadu Contributing Member Contributor

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    I write through to the end of the first draft without stopping to edit along the way, for the most part. I don't get writer's block per se, but what I do is take my time to think about where the story's going and how best to say things before I write them. In a sense you could say I edit as I go a little, though it's very immediate--I'll write a sentence, reword if I don't like it, think about how to say the next sentence, write that, then write another few, reword if I don't like it, then move on and don't look back. That way I have a pretty decent first draft when I'm done but I haven't spent too much time tinkering. If I can't fix it immediately I leave it for later.

    Sometimes I'll get stuck and need to plan out the next few moves. But once I know them I can charge full steam ahead again.

    Best of both worlds, I think, and it's treated me well so far.
     
  13. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    Ginger - "editing as you go" after you have a first draft is just plain editing or revising. "Editing as you go" means doing your editing/revising as the first draft is being written - and oftentimes means that's the only draft (other than polishing).
     
  14. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Really hard to vote on this because each story I write is a different 'experience' and depending on my private life certain projects can get derailed, or experience hiccups.

    Short stories also have a much easier go than novels but not always. A few I've written in one long edit as I go stream lasting a few days. Some I start, they sit, I come back to them much, much later. It's like they need to stew or I need to experience something else in order to complete them.

    Novels I can breeze through at least certain chapters and then have a hitch. ( I also edit as I go - minor edits though. If the story has a major inconsistency I make note of it usually, and then plunge on. ) My nano write novel has stalled out after a tremendous start. One problem is I read a book that had a similar subject and I doubted my ability to handle it as well as the published author did. My hang ups don't seem to be as much writer's block as crippling self doubt. Another problem is if I let too much time pass it's hard to pick up where I left off and the longer I put it off the worse it gets.
     
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  15. Renee J
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    Renee J Contributing Member

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    I get stuck on silly things like names. All I have to do is just put a name in there and come back later to replace it with something better, but I rarely do that. Instead, I spend an hour searching for the best name instead of writing. For example, I was stuck the other day on a type of hors d'oeuvre when it wasn't that important to the story. It just had to taste really good and be slightly messy.
     
  16. mrieder79
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    mrieder79 Not a ground squirrel

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    If writer's block is the feeling of confusion about how to progress the story, then yes. I get it, but I religiously write a minimum of 1k words a night. Surprisingly once force myself to move a character in a direction, the story starts going from there. I have been writing in earnest for less than a year, however, and I'm sure that writers block will visit me in a stronger form. I just haven't gotten there yet.
     
  17. UnrealCity
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    UnrealCity Active Member

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    What about "I edit as I go and never complete a first draft"?
     
  18. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hmmmmmmm......Well, that's a good question, actually.... O_O

    I said for the purposes of this poll, let's define writer's block as a complete halt in one's writing. Let me go ahead and rephrase.

    For the purposes of this poll, let's define writer's block as a complete halt in one's writing endeavors. So, if you're GOAL was to FINISH a SPECIFIC first draft, and you continually find yourself switching drafts, your goal (or writing endeavor) is being halted. Therefore, you can vote option six, edit as you go and often get writer's block.
     
  19. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Option 2, I think.

    I just write, preferably short stories and in one sitting. Any editing comes after.
     
  20. Siena
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    Siena Active Member

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    That's how I do it.

    Because I sorta outline and write pages at the same time.
     
  21. rasmanisar
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    rasmanisar Active Member

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    We had a conversation similar to this a little while back, under Multiple Viewpoints Keep Writing Fresh. Personally I don't get what you might call 'writers block', but I do sometimes feel a little too entrenched in a scene or character attitude. Just step away, write something fun and different, and then come back. Or, in my case, engage in extreme sports ;)
     

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