The Trouble with First Drafts when you have ADHD


If you've been a follower of my blog for a while, you may have noticed that I often start a project, and dive in full steam ahead, only to lose my momentum a few months later.

I used to think it was a failure of mine. I used to think there was something wrong with me because I had so many incomplete stories on my hard drive.

Then I learned I have ADHD.

For those who don't know, ADHD is basically a dopamine deficiency. This means almost everything someone with ADHD does is in pursuit of that precious dopamine (and why we struggle with tasks that don't give us much/ any).

Writing, specifically starting a new project and sharing it with everyone gives me a huge dopamine rush. Sometimes I share details of a new story when it's barely past a half-formed idea. Then the dopamine wears off, and I lose interest.

I'm trying my hardest to find ways of generating dopamine differently so that I have more success with completing projects. Coaching is helping a lot.

But one of the pitfalls I've realized of my frenzied, dopamine-seeking early sharing of projects is that, sometimes, after they're shared I realize they weren't quite ready for the world yet.

You know me, I love a good food analogy, and when I was talking to my ADHD coach recently, I likened this problem to telling all your friends you're baking a cake. Halfway through cooking you announce, "The cake is ready, come and get it." Only, when you cut into the cake, there's raw batter in the middle.

When I get a new idea and start a new project, I get over-excited and want to share it with the world. So often, I do. Sometimes in the form of snippets or blurbs, sometimes in the form of serials ...

You can see where this is going, right?

I love serials because they give me that instant gratification dopamine I crave. BUT what if the serial I'm sharing is a first draft, and halfway through, I realize, crap, there's raw batter in the middle?!

THAT'S where I find myself with Wings, Witches and Wonder. I still love the story, and I still believe in the concept of serials and the platform Ream Stories. But, for me at least, I realize first drafts probably aren't the type of thing I should be serializing.

There are parts of Wings I love, and parts of Wings I hate and want to re-write. And I don't want to continue serializing a story with parts I know aren't as good as they should be. I want to give you my BEST stories. (As a side note, this is one reason I unpublished Truly, Madly, Deeply. But that's a story for another time.)

So yes, all that to say, I have unpublished Wings, Witches and Wonder. It will be back (this year, hopefully), and when I release it (I'm not sure if it will be as a serial or complete novel), it will be a version I'm closer to 100% happy with. No raw batter in the middle! ;)

As I said above, I still believe in the concept of serials and the platform Ream Stories, only for me, it works better with a story that is complete, and that I'm as close to 100% happy with as I can be. A story I won't want to later pull and re-write.

To that end, I will be serializing ALL IT TAKES. It was on Amazon for many years, but I want to reach new readers, especially as Kyra and I have been working to tie it into both her Game On Series and our forthcoming co-written wrestling-themed novel. And, as previously mentioned, I have plans for an age-gap rockstar romance also set in that shared universe (don’t worry, I won’t jump the gun serializing this one! lol).

Additionally, SEEKING THE TRUTH is also on ReamStories as it’s complete and I don’t foresee me making changes and/or expanding on that universe.

So yeah, that's where I'm at. If you've read/ commented on the previously published chapters of WINGS, thank you! Your support and encouragement means everything to me. <3 <3 <3 I hope you will still love the story when I've had a chance to work on it more.

From here on out, I will be posting weekly chapters of ALL IT TAKES and SEEKING THE TRUTH, and I'll have news about other projects -- including WINGS and the aforementioned rockstar romance -- when I'm sure they're properly 'cooked' as it were.

I'm also considering starting a blog series on my experiences as a writer with ADHD, so please let me know if that's something you'd like to hear more about.

Until next time, stay safe, and keep reading & writing!


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