As I mentioned Saturday, I came to the retreat thinking I could write a full first draft. But like Beaker (if you haven’t watched the video above, DO IT NOW!), I couldn’t get the voices out of my head that said that what I was writing was meandering, or frankly, just plain crappy. And even though I know the first draft isn’t supposed to be perfect (or anywhere close), I think I was still in full-on edit mode from the last YA project. I began to get frustrated that I couldn’t free myself to just write. (Laurie Halse Anderson talked about this just a few days ago here and here.)

Luckily for me, nobody’s going to comment on the flaming disaster that is my first draft as blatantly as it happened to Beaker, because nobody will see that draft until it’s been edited and chopped and fleshed out and edited again. (And then of course, the trusty betas will see it. And then I’ll edit again. And then when I think it’s perfect, my agent will see it. And then we might edit again!)

I feel lucky to have excellent beta readers and an agent whose editorial feedback is spot on. But for now, it’s time to just write, and focus on the editing when it’s time.

Like En Vogue said, Free your mind, and the rest will follow…

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