To revise, it helps to:
- Let your writing sit for a brief time.
- Avoid feeling bad or good about it.
- Get feedback from other writers.
- Think like an editor
- Listen to your characters
- Let your material talk back to you.
- Assist other writers with their writing.
- Set the search function on your computer to hunt for common errors. (verb to be in any form. ‘ly’ [adverbs] etc.) Every time you make a change, you strengthen your writing.
When do you revise?
- When you reach the end of your novel, then and only then, can you begin to revise, going back to foreshadow events.
The importance of revision:
- Only a small portion of an iceberg is above water. Only a small portion of what you write will end up in the published book. But the rest — the false starts, the revisions, the digressions, are, nonetheless, the foundation of the book.
Quotes about revision:
- “The first draft of anything is shit.” Hemingway
- “I can’t write five words but that I change seven.” Dorothy Parker
- “I don’t write easily or rapidly. My first draft usually has only a few elements worth keeping. I have to find what those are and build from them and throw out what doesn’t work, or what simply is not alive.” Susan Sontag
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