That Dreaded Rewrite — July 1, 2013

That Dreaded Rewrite

When it came time to sitting down and beginning my rewrite on Woven, I was very apprehensive. There’s so much work in drafting a novel. To do that work twice over seems that much more daunting.

Honestly, it’s been easier than I anticipated. There are a lot of pros (and maybe some cons) to rewriting the novel from word one.

Pros:
~ After drafting and revising several times, I know the story and characters much better and thus the rewrite is stronger.
~ Rewriting from word one eliminates a lot of baggage, like being overly attached to adverbs and certain sentences.
~ Knowing the story and characters so well actually makes the writing go faster.
~ Voice is stronger on the rewrite because I know the characters so well. I already have a feel of who they are and how they’d talk.
~ Any revisions to character or voice that need to be made are easier to make in a logical way and without seams than in revising.

Cons:
~ Revisions to character are harder to make because I know the characters so well.
~ Remembering that perfect turn of phrase or little world-building detail and wanting to just copy-paste it wholesale into the manuscript but can’t.
~ Knowing the characters and story so well you suddenly can’t remember if you wrote that crucial scene in the rewrite or are just remembering it written in the old drafts.
~ Paranoia that the voice is weaker than before.

Are rewrites easier for you or harder?

Making the Tough Decisions — June 28, 2013

Making the Tough Decisions

There are many many tough decisions in life. This is not a post about that.

No, this is a post about tough writing decisions. Some are harder than others.
Sometimes the tough decision is to actually finish writing that manuscript.
Another is to decide not to finish that manuscript.
And sometimes the toughest decision is the one you make to rewrite from scratch the manuscript you’ve been querying.
That’s where I’m at right now. Woven is officially being rewritten from word one.
I’m struggling emotionally with this decision. Intellectually I think I know in my gut it’s the right choice. But it still way bums me out.
Rewrites — April 12, 2013

Rewrites

I said on Wednesday that I’ve never been here before in reference to rewrites.

In a sense this is entirely accurate. In another, it’s not so much.

You see, way back in high school I had this brilliant idea to write a screenplay. That evolved into writing a novel. (Don’t ask me how.)

Said novel got off to a very slow start. It took me years to get a few chapters written. In fairness, I spent the majority of time focusing on graduating high school, graduating with my bachelor’s and then with my master’s degree. After grad school, as I’ve shared on here at the beginning of this blog, I sat down to salvage the book.

What I did then was start over with a blank page and write the story anew. I finished the book, finally, and set it aside in favor of an SNI (shiny new idea).

So, yes, I’ve been here before with rewrites. But with that book, that first book I ever undertook to write, I started my rewrite without a finished draft. I never finished that first version of the book. (That book would need an entire new rewrite to salvage today.)

This time with CofL I do have a finished draft. And that’s what prompted me to actually realize I needed a complete rewrite. The character development at the end of the book does not logically lead into what the character becomes at the end. Yes, books are supposed to have character arcs and such. But the character should at least start out in a place where they’re not TSTL. And that’s how I wrote my MC at the beginning of this book. Somewhere in the middle she becomes not TSTL. And she’s awesome by the end of the book. But it’s inconsistent and illogical to end her where she does when she starts where she does.

Rewrites are daunting things. But I think in some ways this rewrite of CofL will be easier and stronger than the rewrite of that first book because I have an ending already in mind. I’m rewriting a completed draft, not an overly wordy portion of a draft that should be burned.