Thursday, February 06, 2020


I finally got down enough words to count as a first draft for my paper. It's pretty awful, but aren't all first drafts? I tend to think so. 

I printed it out to edit it in order to give myself some separation from my writing space. Editing and writing are related processes but different enough for me that I felt that I needed a different medium entirely (at least with this first round of edits). I didn't want to edit as I wrote; I just wanted to make sure to get down enough content to actually work with, which I finally did!

This afternoon/evening I went over my paper with a red pen and found plenty of room for improvement, which you can see below (don't attempt to read the paper as it sits below; it's definitely only first-draft level (which is to say it's embarrassingly bad)):

I just wanted a record of all those red marks I gave to myself, to prove to my children (or whoever else's work I'm editing/reviewing) that I definitely believe in rewriting.

I don't really want to rewrite this paper right now (so I'll probably take a break and some other writing (I still need to write a personal statement for my application, for example) or work on some other projects (I have several going on)) but at least I can rewrite it now...


  1. Jason first drafts are pretty good but they are agony to watch him write. He sits and ponders on each sentence for so long...and then he grows so attached to them that it is hard to make him see some don't belong. I on the other hand like to vomit words all over the page quickly and then am brutal with the corrections.

    1. I probably am a good mix of both, but I would argue that if you're editing as you're writing (either in your mind or on the page) it can't really be called a rough/first draft since it's a mix of several drafts all at once (and it certainly tends to be a much slower way to write).