2nd Draft of my Crime Novel: Underway!!

After what feels like: –

  • 15 years since I had the idea for my novel;
  • 6 years after I started writing it;
  • 5 years since I finished the first draft;
  • 4 years after I re-drafted the first few chapters;
  • 3 years after I started studying Creative Writing,
  • 5 months since I finished my studying (complete with my Diploma in Creative Writing!)

I have finally started the proper 2nd draft of my Crime novel.

Woo Hoo!

Ok, so the only number that might not be true is the 15 years since I had the idea, but the rest of them are about  right. I wrote the novel and didn’t know what to do with it. The only certainty was that it wasn’t good enough for publication. I must admit I felt daunted by what lay ahead so I did the honorable thing and stuck it in a drawer.

I’d previously written three other novels and reached the same conclusion. I didn’t think they were good enough and got lost trying to edit them. With this latest book, I just couldn’t let go. I decided that the only option was to study my craft.

Calling the OU!

So, whilst it’s been years since I finished the first draft, I haven’t stopped thinking about the story: The characters and the plot. I have so many scraps of paper with some scribbled character descriptions; or a major rethink to the plot. Thankfully I haven’t thrown them away. They are in a box file in the study, waiting.

I wanted to start the re-draft so many times but decided I’d be better waiting until I finished all the courses. Then I got distracted by shiny objects again. I signed up for a Forensics course and then I had to get some stories ready for an e-book my writing group are e-publishing.

But now, it is under way. I’ve just finished the 2nd draft of my first chapter and it feels GREAT.

This is more a re-write than just a 2nd draft. I’ve learned so many things over the last few years I have to put them into practice. I know that it’ll take me longer but I’m sure it will be worth it in the end.

Any tips and suggestions welcome.

Thank you for reading.

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About Pete Denton

I'm a writer working my way through the redrafts of a British crime novel. I also write short stories, flash fiction and some screen writing. Check out my blog for more.
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22 Responses to 2nd Draft of my Crime Novel: Underway!!

  1. Craig Hallam says:

    Good for you, Pete! I did exactly the same thing with Greaveburn. Trust me, after this rewrite is done, it’ll be awesome. The OU course completely changed my viewpoint on writing. Not in terms of writing, I dont think I’ve really improved. But learning to edit has been my proverbial radioactive spider-bite.

    Look forward to reading it!

  2. my suggestion is to examine every scene and make sure there are two conflicts in each one… the one the reader immediately knows at the beginning and the revealed one that shows up during… scenes without conflict are like, well like a southern California weather report they all feel the same

    • petedenton says:

      Thanks for your comments.

      Good advice. I think that is one of the problems I had with the original draft. Not enough conflict. I’ve only been to Southern California once and I know exactly what you mean. I’m sure the weather was the same that day 20 years ago!

  3. Rob Adams says:

    Great to hear you’re ready to dive in again! Hurry up so we can all read it…

    🙂

  4. Joyce Fields says:

    Just keep on making progress. Slow, but steady, can win the race, too!!

  5. Sarah Cypher says:

    Congrats, Pete! And good luck.

    For what it’s worth, I stumbled across this post via Twitter while posting a link to this short video on using theme to make sense of plot/character/voice/etc. when writing and revising a novel. May align with what you’re doing with yours.

    Cheers,
    Sarah

  6. Nice post and keep writing that novel. Thanks for pointing me to your blog.

  7. Andrew Bell says:

    Excellent progress. Keep it steady. This whole process is a blessing I feel, like my journey it will make your story stronger and fill you with a greater sense of accomplishment than say an overnight victory. Well done!

  8. Editing, she is a bee-otch. In the same boat – been having dreams about redoing sections. Keep the faith!

  9. Pingback: The 7 x 7 Award « Pete Denton – Writer

  10. Wayne says:

    Pete,

    How many chapters to go?

    wayne

  11. Pingback: The Magical 50k word barrier « Pete Denton – Writer

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