Given that it’s now late February and Magic Lessons is available in a corrected and cheaper paperback edition in the US of A, and Magic’s Child is a mere month away from pubbing,1 I thought I would celebrate by posting the very first draft of the first two and a bit chapters of Magic or Madness:
Reason missed her mother. She lay on her new bed in her new home missing her mum, Sarafina, so much it hurt. It was her first day in her grandmother’s house. She should get up, explore, do things, but all she could think about was how much she missed her mother.
Compare and contrast with what wound up in the final version of Magic or Madness many, many, many, many rewrites later:
Chapter One: Reason Cansino
My name is Reason Cansino. I was named Reason because my mother, Sarafina, thought it was prettier than Logic or Rationality or Intellect and had better nicknames, too. Not that Sarafina has ever called me anything but Reason. My mother believes in all those things: logic, reason, and the rest, and in mathematics, which fortunately wasn’t on the list of possible names. I’m grateful to have a head full of numbers, but I wouldn’t want to answer to the name of Algebra, Trigonometry, or Calculus.
I have mentioned before that my first drafts are really bad. Now you have proof!
“Reason missed her mum.” Has there ever been a less dynamic first sentence? Or first paragraph? “I miss my mum and instead of doing anything I’m going to whinge.” I’d keep reading that. Not!
I hope this encourages you in your own writing endeavours. The first draft ain’t nothing but the very roughest of beginnings. It exists only to be enbiggened and embettered.
Hmmm, maybe I shouldn’t have posted the first draft after all?
Justine backs away slowly from the computer.
These are not the droids you’re looking for!