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Showing Revisions Some Love

March 12, 2014

It’s a stereotype that writers hate revisions. The consensus on revisions is that they are tedious and painful and often mean that you have to kill your darlings (assuming it’s not something you’re “married to” – I love expressions that only writers use). 

But, I personally love revising. First of all, it means I actually finished something, which is AWESOME. Even if it’s something that’s obviously not completely finished, there’s something really rewarding about coming back to a scene or paragraph or whatever and tweaking it until it’s right, and not feeling dragged down by everything else you know you still have to write.

In the same vein, it feels so amazing to really work and work at a joke or a tiny moment and improve it until you know you’ve found the exact right thing. There’s a discovery to it that’s really exciting, and not something you always hit on in a first draft (or second, or third). Being able to take the time to do that feels so great after you’ve nailed down the broad strokes of a piece. 

Finally, I love revising because I often feel plagued with ideas about what I want to change while I’m still trying to push through and finish the thing. I’ve made lists of things I want to change in earlier pages that I think of as I move forward. The only thing that stops me from thinking about them is, of course, to finish writing, and then go back and address them. Although, I’ve heard of some writers who DO go back and fix things as they are writing (and I’ll change something myself if it’s a quick fix). This is why I also love discussing the process!

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