And then, sometime later -- whether that day, or that week, or whenever you pull your manuscript out and kickstart your revisions -- you realize you got. It. All. Wrong.
ALL OF IT.
You completely misunderstood your own intentions with this novel. Your plot zigged when it clearly should have zagged. Your MC's best friend randomly acts like a douche when that's the complete opposite of how they should be acting.
You ask yourself, "How the bloody hell did I not notice how wrong this all is?!"
I do this almost every single book I write. First drafts, as they say, really are shit. My first drafts always get it wrong. My character arcs are so muddled and confused and when I start revising, I almost laugh at how wonky everything is.
Revisions, to me, are really re-visions. Focusing all the messiness from my first-draft delirium. Fine-tuning all the slightly-off characters. Sometimes rewriting entire plots after they make absolutely zero sense.
My current WIP only shares about 20% of the content from the original draft I wrote back in August. At first, it was just a book about a boy who falls in love with the prince. It was cute and stuff, but it was lacking immediacy. Lacking danger. No stakes.
In my revision, I killed off the prince's dad and suddenly, my male MC's male love interest was the frigging king. Um, hello stakes!
I had the story so completely wrong. I don't even know what I was thinking, back in August.
Whoever said that writerly cliché -- "Writing is rewriting" -- they were so right.