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Revisions Again

I know we’ve had several posts on revisions, so please forgive the repeat.  It’s all that’s on my mind these days.  For the past few weeks, I’ve been reading and studying revision techniques as I try to find my perfect line of attack for this part of the writing journey.  I’m exhausted I tell ya.  And what I’ve found is there’s no perfect formula that will work for everyone.  I must figure out what process is best for me.  Boo.  Hiss. Grumble and growl.  This was not the revelation I was looking for.  Although I write better as a pantser, I’m discovering my revision process is as far from the “fly by the seat of your pants” as one can get.  I need a step by step plan.  A Major plan.  Somewhere to begin and somewhere to end.  Otherwise I end up going in circles and not making any progress at all.

 Thank goodness for our speaker on Saturday.  Robyn DeHart held her “Better Than Botox” workshop at my local chapter.  It was awesome!  I had the opportunity to attend this same workshop at the Nola Stars Conference and couldn’t wait to hear her again.  Although, I took notes fast and furious at the conference, she covered so much and offered such great advice I needed a second chance to get it all to sink in.  She managed to break this huge task down and helped me see how tackling it piece by piece can make the job less overwhelming and doable.  Layering is the art of revision.  Oh, I love that!  Makes it almost sound glamorous. LOL

 She shared her revision plan.  One I think might work for me with a little bit of tweaking.

  • Write rough draft (got it)
  • Take about a 1-2 week break before starting revisions  (got it)
  • Print out manuscript and read it in one sitting, making notes in a notebook as I go for anything I see that needs work  (Yeah, I get to start here.)
  • Organize what needs to be done- a to do list (if you’ve been following the blog you know how I love lists!)
  • Set Deadline – BIG one for me
  • But most of all be real with yourself – take it one step at a time- Figure out what your strengths and weakness are then use the good and work on the bad.

 I’m looking forward to trying it out. Time to quit procrastinating.  Schools out.  Summer is here.  And I get to start on the third step.  I feel like I’ve already made progress.  It’s the baby steps that keep me going.

 Loved the quote she used.  “Good writing is not accidental” I think that pretty much says it all.  I know writing is probably the hardest work I’ve ever done in my life. LOL

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3 Responses

  1. I went to this workshop, but I didn’t take notes. See! That’s the difference between us. I don’t make a plan. And I really should.

    But thing is, I don’t write a rough draft. I revise as I write. When I’m finished, my revision process usually consists of firming up GMC and making sure I don’t have plot holes (all of which Keri always catches). So after I do a single sweep of my finished product, I usually send it to a cp and a beta reader. I always have holes and things that seem out of character, so I either have to firm up motivations or scrap the scene. I take their notes, fix the stuff I need to, do one more sweep myself. And then I’m done.

    Don’t know why I felt I needed to share my process. I should be actually writing this morning, but I’m working on a synopsis. So now you know why I’m wasting time.

    Great post. 🙂

  2. I’ve found every book writes differently. every revision process goes differently. I’ve stopped trying to make a continual mold for doing the work and am just focusing on doing what it takes to get it done.

  3. We’re not alone in this…:)

    “First drafts are for learning what your novel or story is about.”
    -Bernard Malamud

    “There is no great writing, only great rewriting.”
    -Louis Brandeis

    “Books aren’t written – they’re rewritten. Including your own. It is one of the hardest things to accept, especially after the seventh rewrite hasn’t quite done it.”
    -Michael Crichton

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