I write straight through from beginning to end. I've had moments where I had to stop and write a scene that just wouldn't leave my head, but I tend to really try and keep it in order if I can. It's just what works for me. Probably has something to do with the whole Pantser thing!
I'd say there are two controversial subjects when it comes to the rough draft.
- Editing on the spot.
- Writer's block
Most people say not to edit as you go. It's true that doing that means that you may never get to the end because you are going for perfection. However, I find it difficult to move forward when something is really bugging me. So I actually do edit a bit as I go. One time I was probably about ten chapters in and realized I didn't have the antagonist! Yikes. Yeah, I kind of had to go back for that one to get the right groove. If you can start from there and pretend like you've written him in all along, great for you! But it doesn't work for me. I guess that proves that we all have individual differences in process and it's best to do what works for you.
As to Writer's Block, I've experienced it. But the best cure is always the same. Butt in Chair. Make yourself write. If you do that, even if you think it sucks, it ends up working. And chances are it's not as bad as you thought when you actually look at it. Any writing time is good. It all helps and contributes to better craft. Actually sitting down to do it can sometimes be tricky, but if it's important enough to you, you will find a way - even if you have to take a break because of circumstances out of your control.
So that's it! I love rough drafts. It's the exciting, what's-going-to-happen-next stage that gets my adrenaline pumping. It's all fresh and new. What's your process? Do you love this stage as much as I do?