I'm 27,000 words into my current work in progress -- over a fourth of the way complete with a first draft. One might say this is a minor milestone to be slightly proud of, but I'm skeptical. Instead of jumping up and down and glowing about how many words I have on the page, I know (and it took me two other novels to learn this) that now is a pretty good time to stop and see if I need to do some course correction.
I've done a lot of experimenting with this novel. I'm writing this draft super slow, with these long, leggy sentences. So my word count is not shooting up that high, which makes me nervous. But, I know that this is the best first draft I've ever had.
I'm also writing from multiple points of view. This story revolves around two couples, and I'm telling the story from each of these folks' POV. I did this at first as an experiment, to get to know all my characters better. But then I liked the concept and decided to stick with it. I've had fifty pages in front of my workshop group, and the jury is still out on whether or not this is effective. The most helpful feedback is that I'm not spending a long enough time with each character, and that's been an easy fix. I'm sticking with it for now.
But the thing I'm doing most differently with this WIP is that I'm writing my scenes out of order. I've heard people talk about doing this before and I thought they were out of their minds. But now I get it. I have, for once, an idea of the plot of this story. So I wanted to write out key scenes and see what they felt like. Then I've been going back and filling in the gaps.
Yet now I wonder if this is harmless and I can keep drafting this way, or if it's a lousy idea and I should just knock it off. Does anyone write this way? Have you tried and it found it to be a disaster? Or has it been an effective writing technique for you? I'd love to hear any and all advice!