In his 90-Day Novel book Alan Watt advises not to revise anything, just write and write and write and worry about the editing later. But that’s not something I’ve ever done. I’m used to turning on the computer, looking at what I’ve written, and fiddling with the last few lines I’ve written before daring to venture into the uncharted territory of new words.
How to recognize the inherent slowness of the craft with the breakneck pace of writing a first draft? How not to look back at the sentence I’ve written and hit the delete key and start all over again, wasting precious seconds? Using a blank screen every morning, which I talked about last week, is one solution. Another is something I call Fontmania. Instead of typing out the draft in boring old Times New Roman I’ve taken with experimenting with all the crazy fonts Microsoft Word has given me. In three weeks of hardcore writing I’ve used fonts as varied as Sybil Green, Ligurino, Blue Highway, Mufferaw, Baveuse, Amienne, Vijaya, and my favorite-sounding font, Boopee. These fonts have two advantages; not only do they look snappy, but they are virtually unreadable. (Trust me, you wouldn’t want to read a novel, or even the page of a novel, written in any of these fonts.) But for my purposes, the less readable, the better. After all, if I can’t read what I’ve written down, then how can I correct it? But even then it’s hard not to hit the delete key to correct a misspelled word or throw in a comma. The book advises not to stop to correct even the smallest errors; alas, some bad habits die hard.
Once I’m done I’ll convert everything to Times New Roman. I’m looking forward to taking the time to read what I’ve written. At the pace I’m going, I can barely remember what I wrote three days ago.
Over 20,000 words written as of this morning. Thanks for tuning in!