The rough draft sticks to my skin

For me a novel’s rough draft can sometimes devolve into a landslide of research, for use beneath the surface of the story and beneath the surface of the writer. How do you know when too much is too much? Sometimes it freezes me up, prevents me from zooming ahead on the opening-up to a fast-write first draft. I do love the spewing forth of the story without too much control: the elements of discovery that occur only at top speed when the imagination and my fingers are rocking at an allegro pace. Or speed punk. But I also want so much to get the story right. Get the geography right. Get the motivation right. The character’s mind and heart. For me? Perhaps, in tribute to the Japanese I’ll do a little Shinto purification, Misogi, with waterfalls . . . write in the bathtub.

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