Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Type 1, 2, 1-2 awesomeness.

I haven't done a writing post in a while. Which is sad considering this started as a writing blog. I've been so wrapped up in book prep, but I love getting back to basics.

Writer's are all different. Obviously. We each have our own voice, descriptions, style, everything. One thing that has stood out to me lately is the way we write our first drafts. 

Let's start with what I'll refer to as Type 1 writers. These awesome intellectuals pour over pages, giving every detail, expressing every emotion, adding every single word they can possibly think of. 

And then there are people like me, Type 2 writers. These superb beings get to the point. They don't add fluff, don't add detail, and oftentimes don't add enough. 

During revisions, Type 1 will probably spend the majority of their time cutting back, trimming those words, taking their manuscript from 100,000 words to 75,000. 

On the other hand, Type 2 will spend hours filling in information, adding emotion, fleshing out those flat characters, doing all they can to take their manuscript from 50,000 words to 75,000. 

Is either one of them better? No way. Sure, there are people in the middle who get their first draft near perfect (Type 1-2 awesomeness). That's something to admire. But I don't think it means those people are any better than the others. They might spend months planning their book just to get it right. And that works for them.

No matter which type of writer you are, the most important thing you can do for your book is find a critique partner. I'm a Type 2 writer. And if it weren't for my Type 1 CP's, my books would be flat, boring, and super short. Constructive criticism can be hard to take, but it can make or break your book. 

So, which type of writer are you? Do you have CP's that are the opposite?


  1. I am so the type 1! I hate writing a first draft because I don't practice what I preach: I try to focus on both plot, characterization, and rhetoric at the same time. I know this is efficient (or even affective) but that's what happens when people with OCD write.

  2. I'm mostly a Type 2. It's like watching a movie with the sound off and having to lip read. Occasionally a chapter or two comes out with 1-2 awesomeness. I love finding those amid the desert landscape of the first draft.

  3. Hi, Michelle,

    Interesting observation. Funny, I fall into both those types. My first novel was a barrage of words. 125,000,,, INSANE. It took me years to cut it in half.

    My second novel was streamlined and minimal, But I had only needed to add about 10000 words to get it where it is now.

    My most recent project is a novella and for this I am on target, A bit fine tuning after I finish the first draft, and I'm good to go.

    I think many of us in the beginning of our writing careers we fall into either type, but as we go along and work at our craft the two begin to blend.

    And yes, CP's are UBER IMPORTANT. I am thankful to have mine for sure!


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