Another draft

Have finished the third draft of TE, and have incorporated into it many many notes on all I need to do going into the fourth draft. The short version is–I’m finally telling the right story. Now I just have to get the right words (and their accompanying emotions and descriptions) to go with them. I suspect I have two to three more drafts to go, though once I get through the next one, the drafts after that should be faster ones. Though it feels a little dangerous to even say so, because so often when I pretend I know what I’m doing, it turns out the book has other ideas.

But writing remains, for me, a series of successive approximations, each getting closer to that ideal of the right story. And in some way I don’t understand, I can feel that “getting closer,” as well as that “not there yet.”

Found this letter written partway through this draft in my files:


Dear Book,

My next book won’t be like this, you know.

My next book there won’t be any letters to my characters (let alone to you), because the words will all leap from my fingers to the page, and everything will fall into place like magic, and there won’t be any time left over for writing letters, to myself or the story or anyone else.

You do realize this, don’t you?


P.S. Also, no one will get hurt in my next book. Not like in that one scene we had to write. Or in the three scenes that came after it, either. My next book will be a gentle book. A nice book. I like nice books.

P.P.S. Why are you laughing?

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