Reading Your Novel for the Very First Time
Everyone writes differently, that much we know. Some people write the whole novel from start to finish and then read it, make a few minor changes, and call it day. Others labor over every single word and sentence until the entire thing is perfect. If you’re a perfectionist, then that moment might never come. In other words, there are really no right or wrong answers for how a novel is created. What is common to everyone though, is that there comes a point when you’ll be reading your completed novel for the very first time.
No matter when you choose to read your draft during your writing process, you’re bound to be a little nervous. That is completely understandable. No matter what draft of you’re work you’re reading for the first time, here are some tips from a writer who’s recently done just that.
Enjoy the experience of reading your novel
Even if it’s not perfect, try to enjoy the experience of reading your novel for the first time. This is your novel, your creation, and you are its first reader. Allow the author (yes, you) to take the reader (also you, in this case) on a journey of the imagination.
Read the whole thing
This is your first time getting a bird’s eye view of your story. You may discover points of confusion, unclear plot progression, plot holes, or characters who disappear, etc. If you think you’ll forget, jot down a note about issues like these. Don’t stop to make changes, as it’ll break the immersion, but it’s still good to remind yourself what needs fixing. Carry on to the end to feel the whole range of emotions!
Remember that this is a draft
You never see the rough drafts of published writers for a reason! Don’t be too down on yourself about what you don’t like while reading your novel, but celebrate what you do. Enjoy your success for a minute before you get back to it.