I am someone who loves revision, so it is surprising to me how difficult my current re-writes have been.
I need to up the tension in my girls’ club mid-grade novel. For weeks, I’ve shot emails to my agent, suggesting things that I could do to tweak the story. Most of her responses have been similar:
Great idea for a sub-plot, you’re getting closer, but this isn’t the big turning point you need (and I know you’ll be able to find “it”).
I think I’ve found “it,” the big event I need to stick in. As for the writing, I’ll spend a couple of hours deleting more than I’ve written, painstakingly adding fifty or so words. Things are slow going around here. There are other stories I’d rather be working with right now, but this is where my focus needs to be.
Anyone else currently working on revision? What’s your keep-going strategy?
Dayle James Arceneaux says
Caroline Starr Rose says
I have a feeling you’ll have plenty to revise come Saturday!
And I’m expecting you and Bonnie to work magic with my ideas.
Frankie Diane Mallis says
I feel like Ive been in the trenches for years! I sort of have been…for 2 and half years. But Im still excited about my project and Im excited to finish and make it the best it can be. Good luck with yours!
I’m so excited to read it Caroline! I just need to get a first draft done! I haven’t had anything to revise since September.
Rosslyn Elliott says
I’m not revising at the moment, but if I get a contract for my current series, I will have a heap of revision to do on my first novel (the second is the one under submission right now). I sympathize –revision can be brain-melting. 🙂
I’m exactly where Frankie is–revising for years. What’s currently keeping me going is having two crit groups eagerly awaiting pages. I’ve got myself into a conveyor belt of crit with gamma readers, revise, re-crit with delta readers that puts on a bit of deadline pressure too, so I don’t drag my feet forever.
Beside the deadlines, my crit groups’ love of my MC and premise are helping me not lose the love as I rip out and rewrite the muddled middle.
Lily Cate says
I’m in revision End Game right now. So, so close!
I did a sort of test round of submissions in late summer, and got a lot of requests, but the version of my ms I have now is so very much better. I just want to spend a few more weeks polishing.
I’m right where you are (okay, except for the agent part). I know exactly what I need to do for that final push to make my YA novel submittable, but it’s like wading through molasses. I’ve never been so grateful for my writing group!
Theresa Milstein says
I don’t have an agent. When I send out submissions, and receive rejections, I go back to the drawing board. I find that having a writer friend to spring ideas off of is the best way for me to keep going. If you can afford it, a little distance before revisiting may help too.
Tere Kirkland says
I actually just finished a bunch of revisions, so I’m taking a few weeks off to read and relax. (And party, lol)
Good luck with your revisions!
My life is all about revisions right now. I’m with you, I usually enjoy them, but I think because I’m so close to the end (or at least I hope so), I worry that I’m missing something and end up being overly critical. But, it’s time to finish.
Good luck with your revisions!
Stay sane? Who needs sanity? I try to chip away bit by bit–sometimes it’s such a beautifully simple solution, other times it takes completely rethinking the scene or subplot or even the whole arc. But I tend to start small instead of bludgeoning a problem with big changes that it might not need….and work my way up from there.
Jemi Fraser says
I’m revising right now too. It can be slow going, but mostly because I have such limited time. I was kind of stuck for a bit, but a reread helped me out there.
Katie Ganshert says
I’m there with you! I love revisions, but this is taking me so long too.
Thanks for visiting my site earlier. Wow! You’re a talented lady with so many exciting things happening!!
OK, revision – I’m clueless (well, not quite, but it sure feels like it) so I’m doing a Year of the Edit course at my writer’s centre which starts this month. I can’t wait to discover a process that will make my manuscripts shine.
Sounds like you’re on the right track with yours! Good luck!
M. Gray says
I am undergoing revision but am in the *waiting* period for my latest layer of edits from my editor. It’s so hard to be patient but I’ve started working on something else that has me excited all over again.
That’s so great that you can bounce ideas off of your agents. Kudos to that relationship. Hang in there–I’m sure you’ll have the epiphany and you’ll really know it. Good luck!!!
I love revision! Nothing like do-overs and fix-ups. I guess what keeps me going is knowing that there is more to it, something that can make it better, and also just the love I have for my story. You don’t give up on love.
Good luck with your do-overs and fix-ups!
Kristi Faith says
Oh yes, darling…I was ready to burn, smash and throw my computer out yesterday over my revisions. I keep getting close to “it” or I have too many “its” …. I hear you.
Luckily I emailed a writer friend and she set me straight. She gave me a few ideas to watch some movies with similar themes and then read my chapters for me and assured me I was on the right track. LOL I’d be lost without fellow writers
I’m caught between submission (book 1) and first draft (book 2) hell. I’d much rather be revising, no matter how painful that can be.
Margaret Ann Abrahams says
I’m on chapter 5 of my first draft of a YA novel – a long way from the revision stage. But last week I met with my critique group and got some thought- provoking notes on the first 2 chapters which I’ll consider when I’m ready to revise. It’s reassuring to know I have some constructive direction for the revision phase.
Good luck building the tension.
I’m happy to have found you through the comment challenge too.
Dawn Simon says
I’ve spent more time revising my current WIP than I have any other ms I’ve written. Maybe this ms will be THE one, my debut! *cross fingers* My keep-going strategy? I don’t know. I guess I just want to finish so badly–finish without rushing it/hurting the quality.