I am not a fast writer.
It pains me to say it, but it’s true. Those people who can write four books a year, they’re superhuman in my opinion. Even two books a year seems to be beyond my capabilities. Because even when I set aside time to write, the words come slowly. Five hundred in a day is a lot. A thousand, huge. So while I’ve tried to do NaNo, on more than one occasion, I always end up failing because I simply cannot write that many words in a day. And here’s the reason why:
I’m an editor.
When I sit down to write, I read over the stuff I wrote the day before, in part to remind myself where I am in the story. Often I’ll think of a better way to say something, flesh out sensory details, add a line or two to make things more clear. And THEN I start adding new words. Sometimes I’ll go back even further, to a section that was giving me trouble and try to work it out. Sometimes I’ll spend my entire writing time doing edits like this.
There are people who say not to do this on the first draft. Power through. Get it done.
I can’t. It obviously works for plenty of people, but it just doesn’t mesh with me. And frankly, I’m tired of hearing rules. I’ve decided that there isn’t any right or wrong when it comes to writing. There’s just getting it done.
One good thing about writing this way, is that by the time I get to the end, I have a pretty well written first draft. But if I’ve done that many edits on it, is it still a true first draft? Judging by the number of revisions I’ve made on one story in particular, I’d say yes. Because every time I think it’s done, I find myself rewriting it. Again.
What about you? Do you power through or are you more of a writer/editor?