Kindle Forum banner
1 - 20 of 32 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
386 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How do you go about rewriting?
Do you wait a couple of months before looking at your baby again or get right to it?
Do you set aside all other projects (no writing on another project, that is), until the rewrite is finished? Or can you work on more than one project simultaneously?
How many times do you go through it before you send it off to Beta readers?
These are just some example questions that I have on my mind, but really, any details would be helpful at this point.

Doing the rewrites and edits on my last project really messed up my work flow, so I want to know how other people do it. Any sage advice?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
387 Posts
This is what I do:

Finish the MS. Paaaarrrtttaaay!

Put it aside for one week.

Play video games ( ;D)

After a week, start revising. Read it over, print it if you have to. Highlight, cross out. Make notes. That sorta stuff.

Read again. Revise again.

When you feel it's the best it can be, find a beta (if you have someone to read it before you find a beta, that's awesome)

Make changes based on beta's feedback. Send it to more betas if you need do. I like to have at least 5 (if I can)

And that's it!

Hope that helps :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,327 Posts
My production schedule right now is crazy, and I will freely admit that. So I can't dally long between first draft and edits. I do work on multiple projects simultaneously so that I always have something to work on if I am letting another story sit idle.

For my short stories/novelettes, I'll wait a day or two in between. For my novels/novellas, I'm giving myself a week breather before diving back in. So far, it's working, but I know that it isn't the right approach for everyone.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,232 Posts
As soon as I finish it immediately gets emailed off to my beta readers. That gives me a few days to not look at it anymore while I'm waiting for them to get back to me. Then a few days later I read through their comments and start another read-through. I'm usually able to flesh out quite a bit on this pass and any content problems are taken care of. Though the more books I write the less content problems I have. You learn how to catch that stuff instinctively as you're writing. But I've written 24 books, so that helps. It wasn't like that when I first started. Once I do that read-through and make any changes it goes to my copyeditor. I don't work on any other books until I'm completely finished with the one I'm working on.

I don't have any sage advice. Just write and don't get too bogged down in the details. Give your brain a couple of days to rest and then do a clean read-through. You'll usually see what needs to be fixed and then you can pass it on to your betas. I always try to give them as clean a copy as I can so they have less work to do.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
472 Posts
I usually start the next book in the series almost immediately, and proof the first novel while doing so. Usually takes me about 10-15 days if I work at it. As for rewriting, no. That's a disaster on so many levels just waiting to happen, but...if I find a chapter or section isn't working quite right, I may redraft it. Sometimes it helps to write out the previous section by hand to get me in that right frame of mind however, but sticking in sentences to what is already there (i.e. plot points, character conflicts, etc) willy-nilly like legos is suicide, and removes my voice almost completely unless I draft it from a blank page.

I do my own edits because I became sick of editors changing things that had nothing to do with editorial issues, inserting THEIR own voice. Screw that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
386 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Dee J. Stone said:
This is what I do:

Finish the MS. Paaaarrrtttaaay!

Put it aside for one week.

Play video games ( ;D)

After a week, start revising. Read it over, print it if you have to. Highlight, cross out. Make notes. That sorta stuff.

Read again. Revise again.

When you feel it's the best it can be, find a beta (if you have someone to read it before you find a beta, that's awesome)

Make changes based on beta's feedback. Send it to more betas if you need do. I like to have at least 5 (if I can)

And that's it!

Hope that helps :)
Thanks for the response! How long does it take, more or less? Are we talking days, weeks, months?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
386 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
cegesmith said:
My production schedule right now is crazy, and I will freely admit that. So I can't dally long between first draft and edits. I do work on multiple projects simultaneously so that I always have something to work on if I am letting another story sit idle.

For my short stories/novelettes, I'll wait a day or two in between. For my novels/novellas, I'm giving myself a week breather before diving back in. So far, it's working, but I know that it isn't the right approach for everyone.
I'm glad you've found something that works for you. Being able to work on several (or even a few) things at a time really seems like the best (efficiency wise, at least) way. I would like to, but I think it's going to take a lot of determination.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
386 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Soothesayer-

What is it about writing by hand that seems to get the creative juices flowing? I do the same.


LilianaHart-

So you send it off before doing any reviews or rewrites at all? Wow, you're a braver woman than I.
I guess if you've written so many books, you aren't as likely to make glaring mistakes along the way. After a first draft, my books are such a disaster that I'd never send them off until at least a few revisions.
That's good advice, thanks :)

Humblenations-

That is what I've been doing so far, with the idea that I'd be able to look at it with a "fresher" pair of eyes. I haven't tried anything else, so I don't really know yet if it works.....*shrugs*
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
250 Posts
I have a pretty standardized process, but it might be a little backward from others.
After I'm done, I wait about a week before getting into the editing/rewriting, and will start my next project during that time. Once I start editing, I split my day up between writing and editing.
For my first pass, I don't read through the manuscript. Instead, I have a list of words I go searching for--habit words, superfluous words, passive constructions, those sorts of things. Doing this means I go through each chapter about 25 times, but only looking at small parts of it at a time. It's amazing what a different perspective this gives on the manuscript and how it helps you monitor the progression of your writing. Some of my old habit words will only show up a couple of times in a first draft now.
After that's done, I go right back to the beginning and read through, this time with an eye for tone, characterization, sentence structure, etc. I often will have made notes to myself about things to do or watch our for during the first edit.
Once the second round is done, it's off to the beta readers, then back to see their comments and make any changes, then it goes to the editor. We go back and forth twice, then it's published.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,232 Posts
HezBa said:
Soothesayer-

What is it about writing by hand that seems to get the creative juices flowing? I do the same.

LilianaHart-

So you send it off before doing any reviews or rewrites at all? Wow, you're a braver woman than I.
I guess if you've written so many books, you aren't as likely to make glaring mistakes along the way. After a first draft, my books are such a disaster that I'd never send them off until at least a few revisions.
That's good advice, thanks :)
I revise as I go, so I have pretty clean first drafts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,088 Posts
For short stuff (<20K words), I put it aside for a week or two and work on another project.
For longer stuff, I increase the time to at least a month, sometimes more. And work on another project.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
561 Posts
I'm a newbie to all of this, and I'm a part-timer who writes when he can, but I finished the first draft my first novel and let it sit for a couple months.

In that time, I started a short work completely unrelated to the first. When I felt the itch to get back to the novel, I dropped the shorter project and did a complete rewrite of the novel.

The novel is just about ready for publication, the novella has been up for sale for about a month, and I'm now working on a sequel to the novella while outlining a sequel to the novel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,200 Posts
I start editing as soon as I'm done. I don't have time to dally either. Plus I fast draft, so I usually need to do a lot of work in the beginning. I've found if I sit on it, I just forget what I was doing and it takes that much longer. The more immersed in the story I can be, the better.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,023 Posts
Haven't written a novel yet (the first is planned for the next couple weeks) but I finish writing and shut down Scrivener. The next day after work I print it out and do a read through using an envelope to just read one line at a time. Then whatever I find in the read through I fix and then output to Mobi/epub and publish. Then the day after publishing I start on the next project.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,468 Posts
I follow Stephen King's advice in On Writing and leave it a minimum of six weeks, preferably longer.  I then get straight on to other stuff in the hope that I'll forget all about the one I've just finished.  The fresher your eyes are when you come to revise it the better it'll be.  I won't even let betas see it until I think it's perfect.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
561 Posts
headofwords said:
I follow Stephen King's advice in On Writing and leave it a minimum of six weeks, preferably longer. I then get straight on to other stuff in the hope that I'll forget all about the one I've just finished. The fresher your eyes are when you come to revise it the better it'll be. I won't even let betas see it until I think it's perfect.
Yup.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,230 Posts
I used to set a first draft aside for a month or so and come back to it with fresh eyes. But these days I prefer to keep my head in the book and get started on the second draft while I still remember the mental notes I made along the way. There are always scenes I told myself I'd come back to for corrections and fleshing out and I like to hop on those before I have time to forget them. So I go:

* First draft
* Second draft immediately after
* Off to the proofreader
* Final reading that's mostly just accepting or rejecting proofreader's suggestions and making little tweaks

I've learned to write cleaner first drafts over the past couple years (the drafts of my older books were incredibly rough), so I don't spend as much time redrafting now as I used to. The second draft is usually just a couple scene rewrites and overall cleanup.

Bruce Blake said:
Instead, I have a list of words I go searching for--habit words, superfluous words, passive constructions, those sorts of things.
I have to do this too before starting my second draft. I have a list of words I tend to reuse constantly, so I do a find and highlight to check that each use is necessary.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
525 Posts
Like Liliana, I send the work off to my editor as soon as the first draft is done. I don't get anywhere near as much mileage out of trying to revise without someone else's comments - be it a beta reader or an editor. My editor gets cracking on it, sends it back with revisions and comments noted. Meanwhile, I have started working on my next project.

Once the revisions come back, I revise. Then the revised version goes back to the editor for a second pass - this one is more about copy editing, finding any loose typos. The story comes back, and I publish.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,892 Posts
Everything here
Make a copy and tape it to the computer
Tape it to the bathroom mirror or even the back of the door so you see it from the toilet

Read it Follow it Keep typing!

Dee J. Stone said:
This is what I do:

Finish the MS. Paaaarrrtttaaay!

Put it aside for one week.

Play video games ( ;D)

After a week, start revising. Read it over, print it if you have to. Highlight, cross out. Make notes. That sorta stuff.

Read again. Revise again.

When you feel it's the best it can be, find a beta (if you have someone to read it before you find a beta, that's awesome)

Make changes based on beta's feedback. Send it to more betas if you need do. I like to have at least 5 (if I can)

And that's it!

Hope that helps :)
 
1 - 20 of 32 Posts
Top