This is a question to those of you who write by the seat of your pants.* It is also a question of clarification to anyone who would give the advice of "just write" to someone who is stuck on brainstorming or planning. When you write your very first draft of a scene, what constraints do you apply to your writing style? What constraints do you only apply to revisions? Some examples of constraints: Narrator's knowledge. Assume two characters are simultaneously doing different things in different rooms. One of them is the point-of-view character, i.e. the reader only knows what that character knows. Each characters' actions are important to the story because they will have consequences on the other character. Do you write what each character does, just so you can see if it works out logically on paper, with the intent to eliminate knowledge unavailable to the POV character when you revise? Or do you restrict yourself from writing such knowledge in the first place? (Related question: do you ever write a first draft in first person, or do you always write in third person even if you intend to change it to first person later?) Narrator's voice. Do you ever prevent yourself from writing a sentence because you are trying think of a way to write it so it "sounds" right? Or do you just write whatever knowledge comes to your mind in a matter-of-fact way, with the intent to revise it later so the same knowledge is expressed in a consistent voice that enhances the experience of reading? This especially applies to first person narration. Character's voice. The dialogue counterpart to narrator's voice. Do you allow yourself to write wooden dialogue, where the characters just express their thoughts or they express information you want the reader to glean from dialogue, without worrying how that "sounds"? Do you ever write something like "_____ made a witty response that made _____ laugh" with the intent to go back later and think of something specific for the character to say? Or do you stop yourself from moving forward until you have written dialogue that sounds somewhat natural and conveys the information you want the reader to know? Character opacity. Related to narrator's knowledge. How transparent do you allow the characters to be? That is, how much internal monologue and how much statement of internal state (even as simple as "that made _____ happy") do you allow yourself to write, just to keep yourself as informed as possible about your own characters, before finding another way to express characters' thoughts or deciding not to express them at all? Those are just some possible constraints; I am asking if you apply those constraints or any others to your first draft. As a perfectionist who is utterly dependent on a plan, if someone told me "just write" and I took that advice, then I would be inclined to apply no stylistic constraints whatsoever to my first draft. I would just write what happens in the story as it happens, in the easiest, most matter-of-fact manner possible. That is because I interpret "just write" as a way to combat writer's block, and if I ever stop for one second to worry about how I should express a piece of knowledge, then that defeats the purpose of combating writer's block. Is that how you write your own first draft, if you are a pantser*? Is that how you intend for your advice to be followed, if you say "just write"? * By that, I mean you write in a linear fashion with minimal planning. When you need to decide what happens at a given point in a story, you strongly prefer to write complete scenes, one after the other, to discover from those scenes how the characters themselves want to behave, and to let the characters move the story forward. Contrast that with beginning with a high-level goal in mind regarding the direction the story should take, then adding layers of increasing detail, e.g. by going from the high-level goal to a few-paragraph plot synopsis, then to a few-page plot synopsis, then to a list of scenes, then to a rough outline of each scene, or some other plan-driven process.