How many drafts do you do before the final product?

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Post by Guest »

I'm on my fifth. I thought it would be my last, but now not sure it will ever be good enough.

Post by Danielle »

It will be 25 by the time I am done but I have a unique situation where it comes to editing . I will be so glad to see the end of it

Post by Terry »

As many as it takes but I always try to do it in one. What's the point in writing stuff that you know you're going to re-do anyway? Also, I find that creativity tends to react better to full efforts to engage with it, not half-hearted attempts justified by "well, it's just a first draft". Many writers are actually one-draft writers but they don't tend to admit to it because they know they'll get a lot of flak from the conventional many drafters.

Post by Douglas »

Valentina, I just sent my 4th book to my publisher after 5 edits. It gets to the point that you are just second guessing everything that you have already edited! The publisher will do the proofread edit and send it back for approval. At this point I will not have been able to read it and can recharge. I'll probably edit it twice more before approving the manuscript. You get to the point of diminishing returns.

Post by Will »

I suggest giving drafts specific purposes and when you run out of purposes, you're done. Example:
Round 1: draft
Round 2: fix story structure
Round 3: fix characters
Round 4: fix themes
Round 5: check continuity
Round 6: final structure and continuity check
Round 7: check prose and flow
Round 8: check spelling, punctuation, typos, etc.

Post by Judy »

One draft. The rest are edits, tweaking, or slight additions to the work. But edits? I spend a enormous amount of time editing, checking for errors in spelling, searching for redundant key words like "that, look, was," etc., and making sure I'm not head hopping, that I have my scene breaks correct, and that my characters' names are spelled correctly throughout.

Post by Jason »

I write a chapter, read over and fix things two or three times. When the book is finished, I have a friend that sits with me and we go over the whole thing line by line. After that, I leave it to an editor.

Post by Carrie »

If it is your first book, it will be more than five. I'm sorry, but there is too much to learn when you first start and many revisions will be required. The good news is that you get to keep what you learn the first time around for later books and it gets much faster! Good luck!

Post by Harry »

Some may say your question is akin to "How long is a piece of string?" But not exactly; strings and stories are different. Here's an idea: email (or post) a sample of some pages of your draft to one (or all) of us, so that we can rewrite them -- and maybe what you get from the rewritten copies will give you ideas to craft your pre-submission draft. The pages that you send to us will be the parts of your draft that are not as good as the rest (in your estimation).

Post by Lynne »

I don't think there's a set number. It depends on what the work is, how ready you think it is, what suggestions you get from your beta readers, and how experienced you are. I'm on my fifth now and believe it will take one more before it's ready to submit.
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