Re-what?

Rewrites.  The bane of writers everywhere.  For my own part (the only part I really know), I hate rewrites most of them.  I get very attached to my first drafts, and I hate the thought of making drastic changes.  So it takes me a long time to work up the nerves to tackle rewrites.

The story I’m rewriting at the moment, I finished almost two years ago and went through a round of edits.  And then had it slammed in my writer’s group.  It was frustrating, this story that I spilled blood over.  It was the first time I killed a character that I really cared about, and it shook me that it wasn’t liked.  I fooled myself into thinking I could write a perfect story, the kind that don’t require rewrites.  But I’m almost certain that story doesn’t exist.

I’m trying to change my opinion of rewrites.  Sure, I’m doing a full rewrite of this story.  But because I think I have a better idea of the voice and the pacing.  Of what parts of the first draft really worked, and which parts hurt it.  I’ve rewritten the first big scene and did a rough outline of Sophie’s story.  Hopefully this time around, all it will need is some polish in the end.

So yeah, that was the whole point of the post.  That I hate rewrites, but I’m doing them.

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One thought on “Re-what?

  1. Zoe says:

    My problem is that once I actually managed to finish my first rough draft, I left it for a while in order to come back to it with a fresh head (or because I was exhausted and proud, letting myself bask in the amazing feat of finishing any piece after having been writing fiction for roughly nine years). But then when I realized that the story needed tons of work, it made me tired. I didn’t know how to keep the good parts and not completely trash it. By the time, years later, that I figured that out, it had been so long, and the characters were so far behind me, that I couldn’t get back into that headspace. I thought that I had finished with needing that voice to write more; I thought I’d only need that voice to edit, which kind of just requires… faking that voice. So my problem becomes that I’m resistant to moving backwards to try to reclaim the voice, but I don’t want to find a new, similar, voice, because then, it’ll become a full re-write and not just a massive edit. I like to fool myself that massive edits are easier than rewrites.

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