What to do after your first draft

Whether you are writing a novel or a short story, the first draft is usually not so perfect. In fact, you may change it a lot of during the editing phase. Here are a few tips on how to approach the second draft.

Look at it with fresh eyes: Depending how long you have been working on your first draft, you may feel attached to it and think that it is perfect, but that is not the case. Step away from your draft for a period of time, whether it is a few hours or a few days. Doing this will allow you to approach your draft with fresh eyes when you go to reread it. Also, print out your draft (if you wrote it on your computer) so that it is in a new format and you can look at it in a different perspective. During this time try not to do any editing. Save that for last

Read as a reader: Read your story as if someone else is reading it. Read it as if your favorite author has written this piece. It will give you a better perspective on what your readers may feel or think about your piece.

Take Notes: If you are doing extensive editing after your first draft you may want to take notes on the story as you go. You can write things you may want to change or add, or a brief summary of the scenes in your story or novel. This can help you see if you have plot holes in your story. Taking notes can help you have an easier rewriting process, as well as help with the replotting stage to make sure your story doesn’t throw off its readers.

Hand it to someone else: If you are satisfied with how far you have come with editing, hand the story to someone else (the more people the better) and ask them to read it. Write down their feedback as it can help you edit your story further later.

Next time you struggle to write or edit your final drafts, take this advice into consideration. It may help you produce your perfect final draft.

By Ciana Bowers

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