With the information overload in the market about “ How to Write “ and “ What to Write” and “The Way to Write” a new or unpublished writer can really get confused. They may even wonder if they have the talent to write. Doubts and insecurities will creep in. Fear may even bring forth the writer’s block. What everyone forgets is that a writer knows his or her story best. He or she is familiar with the character, conflict and resolution, as it has emerged from the womb of his/her mind.
To avoid First Draft Jitters, writers should write the first draft just for themselves. What we all should and must do is write the first draft just the way the story is unfolding in our mind, or before our eyes. There will be sufficient time later to rework on the technique and fine tune everything. Though I am no expert, my advice would be to let the story flow first before we start listening to each and every bit of advice thrown at us. And not every advice is worth following. After all, you definitely know your story best. You know what your character wants, and how he or she will get it, and what they will sacrifice to reach their goal. You know who your characters will meet in their journey, and how they will be transformed after each interaction, and what kind of emotions they will undergo at each phase.
I feel we all must first just get the story down on paper, or on the computer. After the entire story has been vomited, with all its flaws and shortcomings, we can focus on the mechanics and technique later, definitely in the subsequent drafts and rewrites. The subsequent drafts can be given a complete makeover keeping most of the important advice in mind.
What about you all? How do you handle first drafts? Is it just you and the story, or do you follow every writing craft book when you start putting those initial words down on paper? What advice would you give a new writer regarding first drafts?