Draft two adds more layers to the story and makes it come alive. And to do that, we need details.
Last October, I decided to cheer myself up by dedicating a week to noticing the beauty around me by photographing one beautiful thing every day. An interesting finding from this project was that it isn't usually the huge, expansive views that make me smile. It's the little things.
A plant growing bravely out of a depression in a rock.
The sudden flicker of a lizard running across the trail .
Evidence that people have been in this land, living and loving, long before most of the people I've read about in history books were born. And like me, they felt the need to leave their mark. And eons before that, sea creatures who lived and died and left their fossilized remains.
I love this one orange flower defiantly blooming in the middle of a drift of white flowers. This is the sort of detail that makes a story come alive.
We want our readers to be able to experience the story along with the characters. To blink at a sudden flash of sunlight streaming through a crack in the rock above.
To hear the rippling water in a cold mountain creek.
To feel the smooth texture of aspen bark.
To fill their lungs with the clean scent of desert wildflowers.
So every once in a while, writers need to close our laptops and take a walk, hang out with friends, and eat good food. And when we do these things, we need to notice the details - the sounds of the birds in the forest, the way a friend clicks her tongue when she's deciding whether to order cheesecake or pie, and the creamy texture of the cheesecake when she shares it.
Consider it research.