That pile of paper in the featured image is the original manuscript of The Friendship of Mortals.
When I began writing my first novel in 2000, pen on paper was the logical medium. I did not know if I could create anything worthwhile or if I would soon abandon the project. Besides, it just felt right. Until the 20th century, all books were written with pens scraping along on paper. (Okay, I didn’t use a quill pen.)
Even now, I write my first drafts by hand, but those drafts are getting sketchier, especially for short stories. They’re somewhere between outlines and fully realized drafts. Sort of like really detailed outlines, with occasional fully realized scenes or pieces of dialogue.
I think of those handwritten starts as proto-drafts. They are the first organized manifestations in words of the ideas and mental images behind my fictional works.
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