Tuesday, April 20, 2010

What Kind of Writer Are You?

I've been thinking a lot lately about what kind of writer I am. I think there are two types of writers. Starters : who excel at the first draft writing phase, and Finishers: those that excel at editing/revising etc.



I have come to accept that I am a finisher. I trudge and drag my feet through the first draft phase, but once I get to type the words "The End" that's when I really enjoy myself. I love adding/polishing/finishing more than the actual writing. I've gotten the impression lately that I may or may not be a little weird.



No, seriously, it's possible.



Many of my writer buddies are hard-core starters. They live off the rush of the first draft and dread revision. So, now I'm wondering about everyone else. What are you? Which phase do you thrive in?

20 comments:

  1. I love the freedom of the first draft, that it doesn't have to be perfect.
    But I do enjoy the revisions because it starts to transform from messy to, well, feeling right. I get that tingly feeling when things fall into place during revisions.

    So I guess I love both :)

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  2. I'm a finisher, all the way. I love the early stages, where I'm planning and exploring the possibilities of where the story might go. I also love putting together the outline, because it's kind of like putting a puzzle together and getting all the pieces in the right place. Great fun. :)

    Then there's the first draft. For me, getting that down is like a chore. It's like getting out the big lump of clay that's going to be used for an elaborate sculpture, which just isn't fun. However, shaping that clay into a piece of art IS fun, and that's the revision. Once I get that first draft down, I get all excited and energized and go through pass by pass, adding layers and details to make it as life-like as possible.

    So, yeah, finisher all the way. :)

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  3. Honestly, I thought I was a starter but the more I get into revisions the more I like it. It's weird.

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  4. Four months ago, I would have said I was a "starter", all the way. That was when I was trying to wrap my head around what a comprehensive revision actually meant and required of me.

    Now that I'm revising, I find it tedious some days, but once I get going, I'm enjoying it, just in a completely different way than the drafting.

    I think I can honestly say I enjoy both now, just in different ways. :-)

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  5. I love the first draft and getting it all down on paper, but there is something special about revising and seeing the polished product. Does that mean I'm both?

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  6. When I first contemplated writing seriously-I hoped to whip out a finished manuscript and move on to the next project-I dreaded the idea of rewrites-BUT I have come to love the refining process.

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  7. I think I'm a little of both. I enjoy both parts. Maybe it's the Gemini (twins) in me. ;)

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  8. I'm with you, a finisher. Not weird, though. Nope.

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  9. I love the editing stage. Plotting is my downfall--I'm just not good at it. Thank goodness for writing friends who are willing to brainstorm with me.

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  10. I think I'm a finisher. I don't want to be, but if I'm honest, I think that's where I fall. :-)

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  11. Great question! I enjoy both. But I also idealize the other when I'm focused on the one. If that makes sense. I'm working on learning to adore both processes. : )

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  12. A starter bc I wrote my first draft fast. Now I'm rewriting my second draft and it's very slow. So does that make me a finisher, too?

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  13. I think I'm more of a starter. I love writing the first draft and dread the revision stage.

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  14. I enjoy aspects of both but I can't say I'm strongly one or the other. When I'm revising, I miss writing from scratch and vice versa.

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  15. Oh my gosh, Jenn. I am most definitely a finisher, too! The first draft is so hard for me, but revising/editing what I have done is where I find my joy. I guess that makes me a rewriter more than a writer!

    I left you a little award on my blog today :)

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  16. I think I'm more a finisher. I'm like you in that I love going back through my manuscript, moving things around, adding here, deleting there and pretty soon the novel begins to feel like a real book. Great post.

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  17. Thanks everyone for weighing in! Looks like we're pretty evenly split. Maybe I'm not so weird after all. ;)

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  18. This makes total sense to me, and I think I might be a bit of a finisher. This also explains why I have so much trouble finishing first drafts.

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  19. Well seeing that I haven't written enough to really know I'm going to go off what I've done so far... I'm an excellent starter, when I have an idea the time just flies by...I'm now in revising and that's not near as easy!

    I'm hoping to get a nice good flow soon and make my worries disappear!

    Great post!

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  20. I enjoy drafting and creating something new, but I'm a much better rewriter, so I'll call myself a finisher.

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