Why so many revisions? This question is crucial, honing the craft. My latest novel, 24″ Waste, prompted me to write this piece. Yesterday, I finally got some clarity. Inspired by re-reading my recent classes notes, I strove for direction.
Here is a common scenario
- You’ve got a story
- Some characters
- A journey, process or transformation
- A message
- Even a manuscript with a healthy word count
Of course, you have written killer first chapters that keep the reader begging for more.
It should be easy from here? Right? So you open up ‘Word’ and nip and tuck and rewrite and blow away the sections that don’t work. But something is missing. It still doesn’t seem to flow. This is a scary place, especially after so much effort. How on earth will the reader find their way through the story, if the you can’t?
Rethink it. I did. I took time to rethink one very important question: what is the novel about?
Again: what is the novel about? Be succinct, as if you were writing a 25 word elevator pitch. [Title] is a story of [blurb]. This is down to earth, basic, not fluffy or intellectual. It hones the thinking. Then try writing 100 words telling the reader more, enticing them to read your story.
Look at the situation ie., the unique setting , circumstances and plot. These belong to your story only. Also investigate the story, the universal truth or message that runs through every word on the page. The story is the glue that holds all the random happenings together giving your writing cohesion.
This thread is a powerful factor. It unifies the story freeing the author from a linear plot. Now you can become even more creative giving the reader a wonderful experience. Your story deserves to be told by you, blessed by your passion.