“Take chances, get messy, make mistakes.”
- Ms. Frizzle, “The Magic Schoolbus”
I’m one of those writers who gets really emotionally attached to their characters and settings. I don’t like to let anything go. As you can probably tell from these blog entries, I am also one of those writers who describes everything in far too many words. Editing is hard for me. However, it is a necessary step, as writing is just as much about pruning words as it is about cultivating them. Writing more than needs to be written merely ensures that there is a lot to choose from.
Anyone out there ever study design? Every assignment insists that you come up with a minimum of five different designs before you even take one of them to rough copy. I always thought that was a huge drag, but I have to admit, my fourth or fifth ideas tend to be way better than my first.
Therefore, everything you do, especially those creations that never see the light of day, are incredibly necessary. Nothing deleted is ever lost. Those preliminary designs maybe be invisible, but they are indispensable for getting you to the final draft. Your ultimate product is carrying on for all the drafts and false starts that came before it. It is enriched by all you learned in creating its predecessors, no matter how distantly they are related.