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Preparation Quote of the Day

Khaled Hosseini

Afghanistan's Tumultuous History

So I use the first draft purely as a frame on which to build the actual story. So a lot of my writing is done through rewriting. And I don't become discouraged by the notion that my first draft is not going to win any prizes or that it's not going to be -- I understand that it's going to be lousy, but I want all of the essential elements to be there. The heart of the story has to be in that first draft, and then I can use that to create something and discover things about the story. When I wrote, for instance, The Kite Runner, there were a lot of things in that first draft that stayed, but some things in that first draft were tossed, and the transformation in some passages were very dramatic. I wrote an entire draft where the two kids were not brothers, and it really wasn't until a subsequent draft when I realized that the kids, suddenly the idea came -- well, what if the kids are brothers, and that changed the whole tone of the story. And when I rewrote it, writing it with that knowledge, it changed everything. And so you can get discouraged. Writing is largely about rewriting, and I abhor writing the first draft. I love writing subsequent drafts because that's when I can see the story getting closer and closer to what I intended and what my original hopes for it were.
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