Monday 8 October 2012

To Rewrite or Not to Rewrite-That is My Question

Friday, I packaged up my second draft and shipped it off to my editor. Sounds exciting except now, I find myself fighting the urge to go in and change things again. This happened to me last year when I sent my first draft in for review. It wasn't gone a whole day before I was in there adding scenes and changing stuff... I couldn't help it, except I ended up making a royal mess out of things and when I got my revisions, it was a pain to sort through since much of it didn't match up to my current version.  So this time, I've opted for a hands off approach while I wait patiently for my edits. 

In the mean time I need to find something to occupy my mind and my I've decided to dive into the sequel. I've been reluctant to start writing the second book since I'm not sure the first will ever get off the ground but, what the hell. 

Anyway, I was wondering how you guys handle the wait time when your wips are in the hands of a beta, cp or other. Any advice? 


  1. Work on a different project. Not only does it fill the need to write, it keeps your mind off that mail box. Sometimes I'll take a break and catch up on life, too.

  2. I tend to do the same thing as you... I start making changes as soon as I know someone's reading it. So I do what S.P. Bowers suggests. I work on a different project. Sometimes it works better than others.

  3. I'm waiting right now and it's been odd not to work on my third book for two weeks after working on it for months. Instead, I am playing my guitar more!

  4. Surprisingly, I have learned to wait. I read, write something completely different, and/or work on home projects. :)

  5. Sara: Oh, that evil mailbox, lol. Taking a break does sound good ...

    M.J. Yeah, I think I will do that. Now, which project to choose....

    Alex: Oh, I've got a great idea! Think you could upload a quick sound clip of you playing guitar? I'm sure your ninjas would love it!! (;

    Richard: Thanks Richard. (:

    Linda: That seems to be the consensus... I must be a patient grasshopper and work on something else. (:

  6. It's hard not to mess with stuff, but by the time I'm done editing, it's a relief to say goodbye to the novel. I immerse myself in writing other stuff and avoiding the editing I should be doing.

  7. i hear some are able to write parts of the next 2-3 sequels while waiting edits... or start totally new projects, to keep their mitts [there's more than one romney? *shudder*] off the current one....

  8. Switching focus to a different project is what I do to keep my hands busy.

    Moody Writing

  9. I either work on another project or take some time off to read.

  10. J.L. Campbell: Yes, I agree it's not easy to leave it alone. A new project should do the trick...I hope. (:

    lawolf: Now I'm torn between starting a completely new project or starting a sequel...

    Mood: Sounds like a good idea. (:

    Cherie: Thanks Cherie, I've got some catching up to do on my TBR list. (;

  11. Ha!

    I'm finishing WIP #1 in eight weeks and need to send off to editor in 12 weeks... inbetween the MC gets to read his story, so I am staying well away once MC has it in his hands :)


    I obviously am :)

  12. I think you're making a good choice.

    I'm not to the stage of sending a complete ms to an editor, but I have sent one for crits (in parts). For the reason you cited, I usually wait for all my crits to come in before changing anything with that part and work on other chapters or another WIP in the meantime.

    In fact, I've decided to switch the order of things in the future. Now that my writing is getting tighter and cleaner, I'm going to ask for beta reads first to look at broad issues, make my revisions, then send chapters out for the line-by-lines. No sense having someone go over it with a fine tooth comb if I'm going to turn around and make major revisions, right?

    Nice post. :)

  13. I start writing something new, often a different genre, just to shake things up and stretch my limits. I've written sequels before, but have since decided against writing part 2 until part 1 has a deal, but that's me. :)

  14. Mark: Sending my ms to a beta stresses me out...but to have to send it to a live, breathing MC, wow I think I'd freak. No, I definitely would. Good luck with your wip! (:

    Melissa: I think that makes perfect sense to have someone do a general read through first, then do a line by line. Plus, we don't want cps to feel like their doing all this work for nothing. Thanks for the comment. (:

    David: A different genre is actually something I've had in the back of my mind since a-z...a MG project...hummmm. Can someone please clone me, please? (;

  15. I never though about that happening, but I can it as an all to viable thing to do! I think stepping away is a good idea.

  16. Okay, you are going through the same thing that I went through. Seriously, it's almost the exact thing. I had just finished Slipstream and sent it off to the editor, and I found myself a day later going through the manuscript. I forcefully stopped myself and dove into the sequel thinking "But what if the first never gets published."

    You can't think that way. Because it will get published. And exploring the sequel in this manner will allow you better perspective on what you want to do with the story as a whole. I think what you need to do is take a walk, clear your head, get some oxygen flowing and then just let that first baby go. Wait for the editor to get back to you.

    In the meantime, if you must write, then start penning the sequel. It will only make your work stronger.

  17. I have rewriting issues too. I continue to tweak unfortunately, but noting major. I just can't help it. :(

  18. Don't you think that this "in between projects moment" is the perfect time to work on B&R??

  19. Southpaw: Taking a little break is what I've been doing...I just don't want it to last too long, lol.

    Michael: I see where you're coming from...wish I could be as confident as you.

    Mina: We should try breaking our fingers....or maybe not. :P

    Michelle: LOL! Seriously, your comment made me chuckle because you're right, I've been a big chicken and neglecting B&R for too long.... Thanks for the reminder (: Now, I really need to clone myself......:D

  20. It's good to give yourself a hands-off period - not only so you avoid that mess when you get revisions back, but also so you can view the ms and revisions with a clearer head :-)

  21. Back away from the novel, Elise! I think focusing on the sequel (or any other writing project - did you sign up for Jackie Felger's Spooktoberfest thing?) is a great way to keep yourself from tweaking while you wait for edits.
    Mina's Resurrection Blogfest!


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