52 First Drafts

Update: I DID IT!!! 52 FIRST DRAFTS IN 52 WEEKS!!! It was an amazing year full of self discovery, and improvement of my craft. The wonderful people over at SCBWI also noticed, and asked me to contribute a guest blog post on the official SCBWI website. Please give it a read.

Welcome to the 52 First Drafts project. I am going to attempt to write one picture book every week for a year. Just the first drafts. Where will I get the ideas? Where will I find the energy? Will I make it to the end? Only time will tell.

I hear over and over again, the only way to become a better writer is to write. I want to write picture books. I want them to be good. I want to have my work published.

How often in life are we afforded the luxury of time? I happen to have some free time this year. I am determined not to waste it. On these pages I will chronicle my journey to become a better writer and hopefully a published writer (but mostly the better part).

My struggles, my victories, my walls, my growth, my observations, my discoveries.

Go to my blog to follow along. 52 first drafts, here we go.

10 thoughts on “52 First Drafts

  1. I LOVE this idea! I mean, I LOVE that you are doing it. Not me. No way could I do it…sounds like way too much work. LOL!

    Seriously, good luck to you and I hope you post your progress. I’d love to know how it’s going for you!

    Kasie Milk

    1. Thank you Kasie,

      There have been tough weeks to be sure, but surprisingly it hasn’t been that hard. I actually think it is easier this way than trying to write, say, one a month because I’m thinking about it all the time. If I have a whole month I let it slide till the end.

  2. Hi David,

    I wanted to stop by and tell you what a fantastic idea this is! I saw your blog listed on the SCBWI homepage blogroll, and the title and premise caught my eye. From one writer to another, major kudos to you. This can’t be an easy task, but you’ll have so many stories by the time you’re finished!

    You’ve inspired me to write a different PB draft every week. I’ve been on a roll since the LA SCBWI conference, but that was only two weeks ago. I see how far you’ve come and how many stories you’ve written, and that is motivation for me to do the same.

    You are so close to week 52! Good luck with your remaining drafts.

    All the best,

    P.S. This is very random, but I think we sat next to each other in Kwame Alexander’s keynote at the conference, or maybe a different session. I recognized you from your About Me photo. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I am so happy you are trying this. It is so possible! And it’s not that hard Really! I don’t spend as much time writing as people think. It doesn’t matter what you write. It can be garbage. Just write. You will be surprised how often what you write is actually quite good. I feel I get better with every story even if it isn’t one I think I will end up using. That conference has been so inspiring. I have been revising up a storm. Please let me know how it goes for you. If you need an accountability partner, I can be there to cheer you on.

  3. I just decided that I would write one PB story each week with one illustration and post it on my blog. Then I looked at the SCBWI website and saw your project. Congratulations for making it to the other end–and for being featured on SCBWI!
    I was also inspired by the conference–plus I am on sabbatical from teaching this year and want to have fun and make good use of my time.

    1. Thank you Susan, for stopping by. I am so happy that you are going to do so much writing and Illustrating. Believe me, you will have so much to show for your hard work. It is worth every bit of struggle that may occur along the way. Congratulations and good luck at the start of your journey. If you need support or tips, just ask.

  4. Hi David! I came across your website as I see your comments on Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog, and thought you seem so insightful! Good luck with your journey…it’s easy to see what a hard worker you are. You are sure to find success๐Ÿ˜€!

    1. My goodness, How kind of you. I always feel that I’ll be disappointed if I don’t put 100% into this journey. We all know the end results we are hoping for, but if we don’t learn and grow and have a good time along the way, then what’s the point?

  5. So sorry it took me so long to discover the many nooks and crannies of your website, David. I love the 52 week first draft project…hats off to you! For 2017, I’ve set a goal of reviewing every 2017 picture book that launches and interviewing the author or illustrator…it’s a tall order…especially since I want to keep up my own writing and revising…but I’m determined. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. That is going to keep you very busy! But I’m glad you are doing it. I can’t wait to learn about all of the new books, and I so look forward to the interviews.

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