Ernest Heming way once said “The first draft of anything is shit.”
That quote always makes me laugh – the man knew how to string together words, even when he was being blunt!
I liken the first draft to the baking of a plain sponge cake:
You whip all the ingredients together, and throw it into the oven – a bit like the set-and-forget cycle on your washing machine.
It’s the no stress cake, because you know once you’ve removed it from the oven and allowed it to cool, you’ll have the chance to do all manner of things to it before serving it to your guests.
You can layer it with jam, fruit, nuts, or sweets, and top it with whipped cream. You can ice it in whatever flavour your tastebuds are craving, or dust it with sugar. You can decorate it as simply or fancifully as your heart desires. It can be pink or blue or red or green or every colour of the rainbow. It can be shaped into a flower, a train, a castle, or a butterfly- your only limit is your imagination.
And so it is with writing – your draft is your plain sponge.
After that its up to the writer as to how he or she “decorates” and “flavours” his or her words, to turn it into a tart, tangy, sweet, mouthwatering, or deliciously rich read.