How to finish a draft
Hello everybody, I am finally back with a post and let’s hope that this time, it lasts. I know a lot of writers struggle with completing a draft and it is so hard. But that is what I am here for today, to help you finish a draft. Before we get started don’t forget to subscribe so you’ll be updated every time I post and receive my newsletters and did, I forget to mention my writing templates? After this post, don’t forget to check out my post on completing a draft fast for nanowrimo. That one goes hand in hand with this one in case you not only want to complete a draft but want to do it fast.
1. Write an outline
Finishing a draft is so hard, but what might make it easier for you is to create an outline. An outline does not have to do boring and annoying or constricting. It also does not have to be thousands and thousands of words. An outline is supposed to help you with your story and your outline will help your story in the best way possible. If a big outline including a three-act story structure does not seem appealing to you, don’t do it. If handwriting inspires you, write all your ideas and make them more cohesive on paper. This way, you know where your story is going.
You can do chapter wise outlines, or bullet point outlines if you prefer either of them. And if all that feels a bit much, you can just type out or write the entire storyline in one or two pages.
Outlines do not have to be restrictive; they are there to help you.
2. Maybe don’t do an outline
I just love making points that contradict the previous one and here I will tell you why you shouldn’t outline. Like I said before, an outline is there to help you write your story so if it just doesn’t work for you don’t do it. Finishing a draft is hard enough without having to do it in a way you don’t like. Some people find outlines constricting and cannot write stories they outline since they know what is going to happen. This could be you.
3. Be consistent
No one wants to hear this but to finish a draft you need to write consistently. Everybody hates writing advice that tells you to write every day. And you don’t have to write every day but you have to be consistent. Some days you’ll be exhausted and writing just isn’t something you can do and that is totally okay. But you need to be firm with yourself about doing it. You need to make your own boundaries and take breaks at the right time and decide how much you can and cannot handle.
So be real with yourself, how much you can’t handle and how much you are just lazy to do.
Stop going on Instagram to procrastinate your writing because if you keep doing that, your draft is not going to right itself. Use focus apps if that helps, delete Instagram or do writing sprints with a friend.
Writing won’t always be fun but to finish a draft you have to do it and you just need to self-discipline yourself. Try to take as much time as you can from your days and write. It doesn’t have to be a lot, it just has to be something.
4. Give yourself deadlines
Like I said in the previous point you need to get real with yourself and now maybe consider giving yourself deadlines. Again, you need to figure out how much you can do and not push yourself further than you can be.
Your deadline can be writing ten thousand words in two weeks or a month. They do not have to be impossible. In fact, that really isn’t the point. When you create deadlines you can’t reach, you’ll push yourself at first but when you realize that you can’t meet them, you procrastinate and just mess things up for yourself, so skip that.
Create small deadlines you can meet and it is okay if you cannot meet all of them.
But deadlines can be great. They give you a reason to write and help you achieve your writing goals. You can try using reminders on your phone if you tend to forget.
5. Make sure it’s a project you’re passionate about
If you happened to do everything I said in the post and you still can’t finish a draft, we know something’s up. Maybe the project we’re working on is not for you or it’s just not something you’re super passionate about. And that’s totally okay. Sometimes we come up with these cool ideas and get so caught up in the prospect of writing the story and when we write it, the idea is just not that good.
Does this mean you should not write this project?
Maybe, or maybe not. See if there’s something you could change that would make you feel good about it. A character, a plot point, or you could add a POV to the story.
But sometimes you can’t do anything and the project just isn’t for you and that is okay. Come up with something new and I promise you that if it is something you are passionate about and you are ready to commit to finishing the draft, you can do it.
And that is it for today’s post, I hope it helped you, and if it did don’t forget to like it and let me know in the comments!