"Writing is rewriting. A writer must learn to deepen characters, trim writing, intensify scenes. To fall in love with a first draft to the point where one cannot change it is to greatly enhance the prospects of never publishing." Richard North Patterson
I have this quote taped at the bottom of the monitor of my laptop. The words are my writing mantra. When I sit down to work on a story, I ritualistically take the time to read it. This quote reminds me that no matter what I write, I can always improve it.
But as Hamlet said, "…therein lies the rub."
I am a notorious self-editor. Instead of just getting the words written down and coming back later to edit the rough places, I often agonize over just the right word, just the right sentence… This little procrastination habit drives me completely insane because I haven't made the writing progress this past year that I should have while I've hidden in the safe world of editing.
I was commiserating about this with my author friend, Sable Grey, a couple of weeks ago and she said she periodically has the same trouble, which is one of the reasons she decided to write a chapter-by-chapter paranormal series for her blog (just in time for Halloween). She said it kept her writing on a regular schedule, which hasn't allowed for the luxury of in-depth self-editing before the story is finished. She's exposed her rough draft writing to the reading public, and I think she's brilliantly courageous for doing it knowing that there are grammar, punctuation, and plot tidbits to tidy-up later. She's going to have the story professionally edited before she offers it in an eBook download. The story is called Blakewood. Stop by her blog soon because Blakewood is headed for self-publishing before long and it won't be available as a free download after that: http://www.sablegrey.com
So…where was I? Oh, yeah—hiding in self-editing to avoid making writing progress on new material. Thanks to Sable, I've made it over the self-editing procrastination hump, and I'm on a roll with two new stories in the works. I've even got an idea for a chapter-by-chapter series for my blog now.
Until next time…
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