Last week, I was working on a short story for an anthology submission. The ideas started flowing and so did the words. I wrote about half the story in one sitting and was pretty content. Until I went to sleep.
Before drifting off, a thought popped into my head. I wasn't using the right MC. I was telling the story from a male's POV, and when I cleared my mind and got ready for bed, I realized I needed a female. Okay, not too big a deal. I could tweek the voice and change the character while still keeping the plot and much of what I'd already written. I was pretty content. Until I woke up in the morning.
I did a little more research for the story and realized that the MC wasn't the only problem. I needed to change the plot. For a moment, I hesitated. This would mean completely starting over. Deleting all the words I'd written and starting from scratch. A lot of work.
I opened a new document and got writing. Did I think about those lost words? Maybe once or twice, but in the end, I'm glad I started over. The story needed it. It's better because of it.
So the lesson I learned is no writing is truly wasted. I had to write the first version to figure out I was on the wrong track. And once I got on the right track, the ideas took off.
Are you afraid to press delete or start over? Do you find yourself being married to your words?