One Writer’s Journey

June 5, 2017

The Rough Draft: Only Step 1

Filed under: Uncategorized — suebe @ 3:57 am
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Today I am finishing the rough draft of the book on advertising.  Or at least the rough draft of the main body of the book.  I’ve got about half of the back matter roughed but I’m going to let the remainder wait.  Why?  Because the rough draft is only Step #1.

In the rough draft, I cover the material in the outline, leaving no blanks.  I come in as close to the word count as possible.  In fact, sometimes I come in a little low but I do my best not too come in too high.  I also check the reading level and make sure that it is within the correct range.

But it can be hard to judge the flow in the rough draft.  Part of the problem is due to the various components in a chapter.  I have the main text, two sidebars and up to two other features per chapter.  I know that the sidebars and extras fit into the chapter but I don’t know how one chapter flows into the next.

This means that once I have the rough in hand, I print it out and read only the main body of each chapter.  Does one flow into the next?  If not, I make repairs as needed.

Then I go back and make certain that each chapter covers the material listed in the outline.  That’s important because my editor okay’ed the outline.  Although some changes may be required, I don’t want to go too far afield.

Once this is done, I make sure each sidebar or other material expands on the main text.  It can’t repeat it.  And it has to tie into the main subject matter fairly closely.

It sounds like a lot but really this part goes fairly quickly if I’ve done a good job of following my outline.  But this is a great opportunity to tighten what needs to be tightened and then add even more details.  Kids love facts and editors love it when these facts blend well into the main text.

But the rough draft is only the beginning.


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