First Draft Words & Writers United

What are your first draft words?

Every time I start a first draft I want to die, because its bad… really, really bad. It is full of lazy verbs, vague descriptions, and brimming with first draft words.

First draft words are crutch words–the words I use to get me into a scene or get two characters talking to one another.

When I’m starting my 2nd draft, and re-reading that crap-tastic first version, I highlight first draft words and I compile a list. As part of my final revisions I run a MS Word search for each of the words on my list and do my best to exterminate them.

A few of my most tenacious first draft words are:

“to be” + -ing verb combos
those damned -ly adverbs
What are your first draft words? Email and let me know, maybe there’s overlap.  If so I’ll compile a giant master list of “words that try to trick you into thinking you need them.”

Writers United has a special guest on

Wednesday July 10th.

Join me at Writers United next Wednesday night from 6- 8 p.m.

We’re turning the library into a mutual working space and a place to connect with other local writers again.

I’ll have the normal tables set up for you: Free Write/Prompt, Feedback, Connect, and Quiet table.  But this month I decided to add an Industry Insights table, and I’m bringing in a special guest to help answer industry questions for you.

Author, Editor, and Mid-Continent Public Library Story Center Program Manager, Shannon Thompson, will help answer your writing industry questions.  She’s been published through mid-sized presses, and now has the chance to publish through the Big 5 publishers through her agent at D4EO Literary Agency.  Shannon is a gold mine of literary knowledge so bring your questions and something to take notes on!

  • We’ll see you Wednesday night, July 10th in the Carmack Room of The Jo. Co. Central Resource Library, 9875 W. 87th St., Overland Park, KS 66212
  • 6 p.m.- 8 p.m.

Please help us get the word out to as many Kansas City writers as you can. Here’s a link to the Facebook event to help share.

If you want feedback, print a copy or two of your work so you can swap with another writer. Otherwise just bring a pen and paper, or your computer, or a vat of ink and some parchment.

Hope to see you there!

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