Vomit draft.Posted: July 1, 2014
I forget where I heard the term “vomit draft,” but it’s another term for “first draft,” and it’s so apt. I’m working on the second novel, the Belize novel—whose title I’ve already chosen, but feel strangely superstitious about saying out loud—and trying to shoehorn my life back into something resembling a steady schedule. After everything. After the trip, the play, the novel, and the floods of sweetness in their wake.
Morning pages every day.
Work out every day.
Half an hour of research reading a day.
Half an hour of Spanish translation a day.
Half an hour of pleasure reading a day.
A thousand words of the new novel a day.
And in writing them, whenever I get frustrated or stuck, I have to keep reminding myself of a very basic lesson: they don’t have to be the right words. They’re just the raw material. Shaping comes later.
So there’s the clay metaphor, but even that is too pretty: I like “vomit draft.” I have to permit myself to be awful.