I recently wrote a short story in the universe Owen and I have created. It was based on two characters that we have a little history on but we haven’t gone into much detail with and as an exercise I thought I’d write their story. This is the story that I wrote on my phone (I think I mentioned that here) but it didn’t work. I think the core of it is good but it’ll need a lot of attention to bring it up to where it needs to be. I knew how it was going to end, but aside from that I had no real idea of how I was going to get to the ending.
When I printed it out to see what shape it was in I saw just how disjointed it was, so I decided it would be best just to rewrite it (yes, I seem to be mainly focusing on rewrites at the moment). Something I’ve learned of late is that I’m not anywhere near prepared enough before I start writing. So I’ve been working on brainstorming some the stories I want to work on in the near future. Most of them are collaborations with Owen at the moment and I’m hoping this will help us when we get down to the actual writing stage. We can spend time adding the details to a brainstorming file and start to develop the story as we go. Something I’ve noticed about when I’m writing is that my first drafts change quite a bit from start to end. Mainly in tone but I also want to add more detail to earlier segments while I’m many chapters past them.
I’ve also found that I write better when I’m writing longhand and that’s something that I’m going to try to do with first drafts for a while now. My plan is to write out a story, making notes along the way and then read through once I’ve got the draft done, making further notes as I go. So, in theory, when I begin to type it up (which’ll be my second draft) the story will have a direction that I found as I wrote but might not have had at the start of the story.
I’m really hoping that raising my level of preparation will help when I come to write the actual story.