Saturday, July 24, 2010

Blog Chain - Revise Me a Story

This round's blog chain comes from the FABULOUS Sarah who, I might add, stayed up with me into the wee hours last night for an EPIC brainstorming session! Let me just say, that girl could write a book in a night! Anyway--she asks the question:

How do you handle revisions? Do you revise as you're writing, or do you wait until you've gone through beta readers and crit partners to revise? How soon after you finish do you begin your revisions?

I hate to revise. Well, at least, I used to. It always seemed like such a daunting task. I'd whine about making the changes with an "I can't" attitude. But now that I've found my revisionist groove, I don't feel that stress any more. Revising is part of the process and there are many voices chiming in, helping your novel to become a complete and finished product.


I do like to revise while I write. Sarah and I have a tendency to crit chapters as we write them and the rhythm works well for us. But my other crit partners like to have that finished MS in their hands and that works great too! Different methods=different results=all good! While I'm writing, I like to go back and read the previous chapter. I usually don't make any major changes, I'll just polish it a bit. After I've typed THE END, I know I should wait the obligatory 4-6 weeks, but let me tell you, it's HARD for me. I'm not a waiter--like--at all. I'd get so excited to "get the book out there" that I'd jump the gun. And more than once, I've suffered for my haste.


Wait. Do it, people. I may not be any good at it, but I know the benefits. Revise, let the MS sit and send it crit partners. Revise again. Shelf the book for a while--three weeks is even better than none!--and revise again. Once you get that draft to fighting weight, send it out there. And yes, be prepared to revise again, and again, and again!


Kate's response to this question came before mine, and Sandra's will pop up tomorrow. If you want to read about the entire chain's approach to revisions, Start from Sarah's original post and work your way through! Unless, you've got some revising to do! ;)

8 comments:

Sandra Ulbrich Almazan said...

Waiting is very hard. It helps to have something else to work on in the meantime.

lbdiamond said...

We have such a similar process-for sure, letting it sit is the hardest part! :D

Kate Karyus Quinn said...

I agree, sometimes letting it sit is the hardest part!

Kristy said...

I'm so excited for when I actually have enough in my hands to revise!

Cole Gibsen said...

I totally agree - Sarah rocks :)

Eric said...

Waiting. Oh, that's that thing you're supposed to do where you don't touch the manuscript for a while, right? And it sits over in the corner with a "please fix me" look on its face. And it's like the elephant in the room that you're not supposed to acknowledge, because you're waiting.

Yeah, I'm not familiar with that one :) Great post!

Shaun Hutchinson said...

Waiting is so important. It's also what I'm terrible at. I know that if I waited more my poor agent would have a lot less work to do.

Sarah Bromley said...

Waiting...well, we both suck at it. However, there is something to be said for the fix-it-now mentality. And you are the revision queen, totally.