My Creative Writing Process

We’ve talked a lot about the creative writing process this month so I thought I would share my creative writing process.

My Creative Writing Process | Creative Writing | Writing | Writing Tips | Novel Writing | RachelPoli.com

Outlining

I go back and forth with my outlining process. Sometimes I outline before but sometimes I outline during. I used to always summarize what I wanted to happen in each chapter and then it would change during the writing process of the first draft.

Now I usually outline just the basics. Plot points I’d like to happen, random ideas, a list of characters and places, and the like. While I write my first draft, I summarize each chapter. This makes the editing process so much easier for me in the long run.

Writing

I give myself about a month to write the first draft. This is all thanks to NaNoWriMo. Some people don’t agree with it, but I believe that the first draft is just you telling yourself the story. If it’s a bunch of gibberish, at least you got the bare bones down. So I typically spend about 30 days writing 2,000 words a day to get the first draft done. Then the real writing begins.

RevisingEditing

I’ll admit… until I just did the research for this month’s blog posts, I though revision and editing were one in the same. So I guess I should take a look at how I do things.

Still, I’ve gotten into a good routine with my editing. I’ve been using the rainbow editing method for the last few drafts of my various manuscripts and it’s been working really well for me. It helps me zero-in on certain aspects I need to focus on. Editing is not as difficult as it used to be for me.

Publishing

Yeah, I’m still figuring this one out.

What’s your writing process look like? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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15 thoughts on “My Creative Writing Process

  1. Great post! I also change between outlining beforehand/during writing or pantsing (although the latter is mostly for flash fiction). The rainbow editing method sounds really interesting! I usually do character sheets for the MCs beforehand for longer works, and then add the secondary characters as they pop up (or become more important to the story – as they tend to do).
    I am currently busy with a fiction writing course and it’s helping me so much! Although that does mean that I’m working slower as I do a LOT more editing of my work at the moment…

    • That’s a great idea. I used to always think that outlining HAD to be before the writing actually began. But I’ve found outlining during the first draft works much better.

      That’s great you’re doing a fiction course though. I’m glad it’s helping you! Is it an online thing or did you find one near you?

        • It varies. Depending on book length, what else is going on in my life, how my health is, whether it’s my main project or a side project, how well the words are flowing, how many revisions it ends up needing, etc, my books usually take anything from a month to six months from when I start writing the first draft to when I have something I can publish. The average is probably around three months (though it looked like I was working faster during my first couple of years of publishing, because I had a production line of older stories I was revising and publishing going, so had a new title ready every few weeks).

          Having said that, I do have one that’s the exception, which is the adventure story I’m still working on. We won’t go in to how long I’ve been working on that one. It’s more than six months though, and I still haven’t finished the first draft. In my defence, I have spent most of this past year either in hospital or attempting to recover in between hospital trips.

          • I think that’s a pretty good routine. I mean, it takes a long time and you want to do your best… then again, you just want to get them out in the world, lol. I have a timeline similar to that for some of my projects. Hopefully I can stick to the deadlines!

  2. Great post. I get confused between revising and editing as well. It wasn’t until I looked it up and found out they were two different aspects of the writing process. Most advise revising first, then editing. So I try to follow that advice. Outlining isn’t something I do very much for my stories. Or it’s a bare bones outline at best. If I feel it’s going to take a few days to write the first draft, then I’ll create some kind of outline.

    • Thanks. Yeah, who knew there were different stages of “editing?” It’s certainly something you don’t really think too much on, especially since you get into a good groove with it.

Let me know your thoughts!

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