The long road to the end of the second draft

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Published May 28, 2013

Well it’s taken longer than I would have liked but I finally finished off the second draft of my novel Legacy this morning.  It took a good six weeks to get to this point but it’s exciting to have it done.  There were countless grammar and spelling mistakes that I knew needed correcting but I also really improved numerous scenes that just weren’t very good.

I’m much happier with the rewrite the flow is better there’s more excitement and tension to draw the reader in. And I was better able to fleshed out a number of secondary characters who I hadn’t done justice to in the first draft.

So what’s next? Well to that I’m at a bit of a quandary I want to get it out to my beta readers but I’m sure it could do with another proofread to catch everything I missed the first time.  So I think I’m going to give it another quick proofread before showing it to anyone.  I’m not going to spend another month on it. Hopefully a few more days work should let catch the main problems and then I’ll be sending it to my beta readers.

I thought I’d also share three tips I learned from doing my second draft.

1 – Keep Good Notes

One thing I started but didn’t maintain when I first started writing was taking notes about everything, from the characters, places, terms, and scenes.  Having those notes was really useful at times when I needed to remember the name of the jungle that was mentioned in passing two hundred pages back 0r remembering the names of minor characters at a feast.  I’ve yet to find a really good system for taking note though so I’m still on the lookout for a new system.

2 – Refine the Tone for Each Scene

Is this scene supposed to funny? Sad? Terrifying? Have you done enough to convey that emotion? When reworking scenes its import to keep the main tone for scene in mind and rework the pacing and language so that this is emotion is portrayed effectively.

3 – Check  that Character’s Language is Consistent

Have you made sure that each character has its own voice and that their voice is consistent across the novel?   If a character is a grizzled veteran when you first meet them then they shouldn’t sound like kindly innkeeper further down the line.  Also try and flesh out each characters voice so that they are all unique.  Every character in your novel should have their own style and manner of speak some formal others short and curt or flirtatious and fun. Keep your characters interesting and varied and the reader will identify with them more.

Good luck everyone with your writing and keep reading!

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