Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

John Fowles on first drafts

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I find it very difficult to write if I don’t know I shall have several days absolutely clear. All visits, all intrusions, all daily duties become irksome. This is during the first draft. I wrote the first draft of The Collector in under a month; sometimes ten thousand words a day. Of course a lot of it was poorly written and had to be endlessly amended and revised. First-draft and revision writing are so different they hardly seem to belong to the same activity. I never do any “research” until the first draft is finished; all that matters to begin with is the flow, the story, the narrating. Research material then is like swimming in a strait-jacket.

John Fowles, “Notes on an Unfinished Novel

Written by nevalalee

April 23, 2011 at 12:07 am

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