Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Revision Cave - What I've Learned

I'm peeking my head out, I'm almost done, and I thought I'd share what I've learned... what I'm sure most of you already know about revisions. Revisions are painful,

but in the midst of it all, I'm having a very Zen-enlightenment experience of learning about myself. (That's a joke, because I already knew these things about myself, I'm really experiencing the joy of attempting to grow through them.)

#1-I don't like redoing things.

It's the reason I took classical piano lessons for eight years and never excelled. I hate to practice. Something in me resists going back and reliving, revising, learning to make something better.

And that's a huge mistake. Practice, revision, and review are so important. Already I can tell certain scenes are stronger from just a third (or fourth) look.

#2-I get in a funky mood when I write funky scenes.

On Friday I added a love scene (going from YA to adult here) and enhanced a ... (no spoilers) Bad Scene. And by the end of the day, I needed some dancing medicine. (Just ask Matt, Sheri, and Kelly who I happened to find on FB later that evening.) I am not proud.

But at the same time, that's probably a good thing, right? And if we can all resist becoming Earnest Hemingway over it, investing real emotions into emotional scenes only makes them more authentic, yes?
Source

So those are my weak excuses for why I'm M.I.A. again. No moves, no motherhood drama. Just me in the revision cave, hopefully getting better all the time. Miss you.

Got any humorous (or not) self-discoveries to share from the cave? Otherwise, I hope most of you are having a blast at Write On Con--another great writer's resource.

Have a great weekend, reader- and writer-friends. Til Monday. Namaste~ <3


22 comments:

Jessica Bell said...

I know this feeling all too well ... Ack. You just have to go through it unfortunately! :-/ Big HUGS!

Old Kitty said...

Glad you are ploughing on with such determination with your edits!! GOOD LUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Take care
x

Michael Di Gesu said...

It's all part of being a writer. Revisions DO make the work stronger and that is the bottom line.

I'm in the same cave with you.... lol. I wish! It would be too much fu and we'd never get any work done.

I have on final read through before sending my ms out into query hell...

Have a great weekend.

Clarissa Draper said...

I hate revisions too. It's probably because I need so much practice. I love funky scenes though, they make everything better. I would love to be Earnest Hemingway.

Anita Grace Howard said...

Good for you on the revisions! And no matter how painful they are, remember: they can make all the difference in the world. I'm living proof. :)

Laurel Garver said...

I've been in the drafting cave lately, but the revision cave was my home most of last year. I think it's funny how over time I let critiquers suck all the voice out of my story, and had to go back in and pump it in again. Oh, and realizing after revision #22 that I'd accidentally switched two minor characters' names in once scene. Whoops. How did I not see that before? LOL.

Carol Riggs said...

Glad to hear of your progress there in the cave! Here's to Zen and funkiness and redoing things. :) While waiting for my own revision round 2 notes, I'm doing some of the line-editing myself. Ack!--I discovered while making my style sheet that I'd named something different; had said District in 3 or 4 places and ZONE in another. *headsmack* Well...at least I noticed!

RosieC said...

Good luck with your revisions. It sounds like they're going well. And, yes, packing some emotion into your scenes is a good thing, and breaking into some dance-inspired medication later to ease up and save yourself from an absinthe-induced early death is also a positive in the long run :)

I don't like redoing things either, mostly because I'm a perfectionist and each time I go over things, I dislike them until they're completely rewritten. It's not always a good thing, either.

Keep up the good, hard work! And stay sane :)

Anita said...

Get back in that cave! Sending you good thoughts!

Elle Strauss said...

Lately, I feel like I'm living in that cave -- sort of imprisoned--hoping for the light of day soon....

Glad to hear you're learning so much!

Summer Ross said...

Writing wise I am learning how reword sentences. Good luck with the rest of your revisions!

GigglesandGuns said...

Sounds like things in the ave are going well. Soon it will all be a memory -- at least until the next book :D

Lydia K said...

I don't like revising either. I much prefer the first draft, in general, but revision is a necessary evil I guess!

Matthew MacNish said...

There's a Zen rock garden part in my book. I hope you like that part (even though I'm well aware it probably goes on too long). HELP!

Adriana Noir said...

Revisions are no fun! That's usually the time I start second guessing myself and everything about my story. *hugs* Hang in there, girl! You can do it, and the rest of us can't wait to see the end results. :)

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

Somehow struggling with the writing always feels like failure to me. Life, geez, if I'm working this hard, it must really stink. When, of course, the opposite is true - that's when the best stuff comes out. Intellectually, I know this. Emotionally, I pout. :)

Carolyn Abiad said...

The *bad scene* is getting worse? OMG. No wonder you needed some relief!

LTM said...

@Anita--thanks, honey! That's what I'm counting on~ :o) <3

@Summer--that's a good thing to learn! :D I'm learning not to use "as" so much. It seemed to be my favorite word this time... Thanks, girl~ <3

lbdiamond said...

I hear you on the hating to repetitively do things, LOL!

It's HARD work!

Kari Marie said...

I'm with you on the repitive nature of revisions. Boring! BUT, I do like what I see when I'm done.

I guess it's like exercise. I HATE doing it but almost always feel better after and love the long term results.

Good luck with your revisions!

Theresa Milstein said...

Thanks for sharing your perspective.

I enjoyed Write On Con!

RaShelle said...

Leigh - I love you, girl. I so needed to read this. And nothing wrong with a little dancing medicine once in a while. LOL. HUGS