Monday, July 16, 2012

First Draft = Batmobile Golf Cart

Confession: I want this Batmobile Golf Cart. No, I don't play golf. No, I don't have the money to purchase a Batmobile Golf Cart.


Second confession: I reached 50k on my WIP a few days ago. While skimming through my 50k first draft, I realized two things. 1) It is in the Major League of OMG Suckage; 2) It is in said League because it has what I like to call the Batmobile Golf Cart Issue.

Batmobile Golf Cart Issue
--a first draft that consists of a bunch of stuff you want to include in a first draft, but ultimately, you sure as hell don't need. 

All my first drafts have the BGCI. Usually, I think Main Character should make This Decision. I also think Villain should take down Main Character using This Punk Move. I also also think Main Character and Love Interest should Make Out during This Scene where All The Giraffes Are Eating Bananas (disclaimer: there are no giraffes in my WIP, and I'm not entirely confident giraffes eat bananas at all). The thing is, when I come back to the WIP after some distance, I notice the level of suckage for what it truly is. 

You might want your giraffes to eat those bananas like total bosses, but if they do, what purpose does it serve your story? Do you need them to eat those bananas like total bosses at all? Or are you living out a childhood fantasy for the sake of living it?

Folks, I can't have the Batmobile Golf Cart. It hurts, but it's the truth.

Now if you'll excuse me, I must continue filling my first draft with Things It Doesn't Need But Will Disappear During Revisions.

Your turn: do your first drafts have the BGCI? If so, what's your most common offense?


  1. Haha I love this!
    *goes back to work (aka stuffing her WIP with A LOT of stuff it doesn't need. At all.)*

  2. I think *everyone's* first draft has at least one Batmobile Golf Cart in it. It's just so cool! It's so important! It must be there!

    Or not.

  3. Ok, I will admit first drafts tend to be rather spartan, and not in that cool, "SPARRRRRTTTTTAAAAAAA" kinda way, but in the hurrying-through-the-scenes-to-get-to-the-good-parts kinda way. My second run through tens to be a lot more adding in, slowing the pace, making it a journey not a jaunt. Oh, yes, there IS suckage!

  4. This is the funniest analogy I've heard in forever.

    I actually started this thing called "outlining." Susan Kaye Quinn made me do it...

    This way I actually get less things I don't need because I know where the story is going.

  5. Batmobile golf cart! I want one too! My big BGC issue must be over-explaining. I'm guilty of beating the reader about the head and shoulders until I'm sure they see my point EXACTLY AS I WANT THEM TO! I use the first revision to step away from the edge and remember that the reader probably has a brain and some deductive reasoning skills. :)

  6. haha Love this comparison. Before I got to the meat of the post I said, "I WANT that!" (I also do not play golf and prefer to drive faster than 8 mph when I drive places).

    I am writing a historical and it's tempting to load up on delicious details and references; it's tempting to use them ALL but ends up similar to backstory or infodump. I personally have been annoyed by this in books so I have to watch for it in my own writing.

  7. Ha! I love this too! Such a clever comparison!!

  8. This is such a great post!!! Something about the giraffes eating bananas is really helping me see those extraneous scenes in perspective. Thanks!

    I'm revising at the moment--there aren't a lot of BGCI's left, but I'm sure there are some... I think I need a break, though, because I've been staring at the computer so long that my eyes are playing tricks on me. (A second ago I thought I saw the orange owl on the left flap its wings...Hmm.)

  9. Boy is like you were looking at my first draft. Got me a whole buncha BGCI. And the worst of the is the pretty, emotional, introspective scenes with the pretty backdrop setting that I sets it off...prettily. I do so lub those scenes, but yep I need to feed them to the bats. Great post. Thanks!

  10. It’s really a hard truth that we cannot get everything that we want. But hey, if there’s a will, there’s a way! Who wouldn't want that kind of golf cart? Haha! You may not own one today, but there's a lot of tomorrows! I’m sure it’s not too late to have yours if you’re really passionate about it.

    Jay Stewart


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