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So. Three days ago I proudly announced to my husband that I had finished my first draft. Yay me, it’s a first in itself.

Go back three years and I would be telling all and sundry I’d written a book. Not now.

Right now, no one is allowed to set eyes on the thing until it’s of a readable quality. You see. It needs perfecting, while the bare bones of the story that was itching to find it’s way into the world was there, it was a long way of from right. I’d worked with one focus – the number of words I was producing. All well and good, as they say, find they way that works for you. Right?

I’m sorry to shoot down all those people at the same stage as me – and I know there are a lot of you – but thousands of words do not constitute a story. Now a book might well be a collection of words, granted, but those words are strung together in some form of sense. There’s a technique to it. Where’s the story in this mass of words. Just because it makes sense in MY head doesn’t mean Joe-Bored-Britches will have a clue.

(My University course is clearly paying its dues here.)

Then there’s the vortex causing snails. You might have plot bunnies. I don’t. I have great trans-dimensional black holes – caused by snails. Space Snails. Space Snails are the distant relations to our common garden variety. The ones that have just decimated the pretty little collection of flowers we planted out last week. You know that morning the sun came out for two hours? Yes, then.

Like their cousins, Space Snails move slow and deliberately, munching away at plots and scripts without preference. In doing so they transport characters to the wrong side of the world, distort time, and devour perfectly good sense. They are sneaky buggers, too as they don’t just eat at characters, they like steeling your plot devices too. These things are far more dangerous than the cute little plot bunnies, and far more satisfying when you hear them yelp and squelch under the mighty pressure of the re-edit boot.

 

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