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Lobby 2. Welcome Main Community Discussion Board topic #91386
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Subject: "RE: Self-confidence and writing" Previous topic | Next topic
Mesg #91389 "RE: Self-confidence and writing"
Author Dreamerscove     Click to send email to this author Click to send private message to this author Click to view this author's profile Click to add this author to your buddy list
Author Info Member since Sep 25th 2007
1581 posts
Date Sun Aug-19-12 01:49 PM
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Mon Aug-20-12 11:54 PMby Dreamerscove

Oh yes. Always always always keep an original of the first draft. This has saved me so many times with little things as well as entire scenes that I had to go back to the original.

Revision is like all other aspects of writing: it's different according to the writer.

For instance:


  • I write spare first drafts. It's basically the skeleton on which I go back and add other things in my big revision pass.
  • I get it right the first time more often than not. I attribute a lot of this to outlining before I write, so all the big plotholes are usually solved at that point. There's no need for a huge rewrite.
  • I only do three revision passes: The big one where I put in all the notes I made on the way. Second is to do more of a proofing pass for my problem words and then of course spell and grammar check it. Then off it goes to the editor. Third pass is only for those things the editor finds. Yes, the last two don't take all that much time.
  • Overall I like my first drafts. Yes, there is some emotion and description to put in there because I write spare first drafts, but I like them.
  • I give myself a deadline for revision. No story is ever going to be perfect, and I have too many other stories to be written and revised to spend forever on an unattainable quest.


Dean Wesley Smith tackled the subject (he calls it rewriting) on his blog. I don't agree with everything, but the articles and the comments did give me a few pointers, as well as show me that I'm not the only one that works like I do. Not feeling alone in what can be an isolating career choice is a good thing.

Killing the Sacred Cows of Publishing: Rewriting
Killing the Sacred Cows of Publishing: Rewriting Part Two

I use Scriveners pane-view ability in revision. Original draft in the pane on the bottom, revised draft in the pane on the top. If a section is good, then I copy and paste it into the revises panel, making any word tweaks I want along the way. If a scene needs to be completely rewritten, then I just type it into the pane on the top.

I do not type the entire thing back in. Too much is good as-is, and that would take more time that I would rather use to write new work.

Working this way also allows me to track my progress, which is a hard thing to do with revision (tracking by hour doesn't work for me, motivation-wise). I have a yearly new wordcount and a revision wordcount goal. Doing revision using Scrivener, with bringing the revised portion up from the first draft, allows me to track how far in words that I've progressed in a given day, month, or year. Seeing progress helps me stay motivated to keep going. I can literally see how far I've come since I started the project.

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Self-confidence and writing [View all] , apprentice1, Sun Aug-19-12 05:28 AM
  RE: Self-confidence and writing, Wandering Author, Aug 19th 2012, #1
RE: Self-confidence and writing, Weird Jim, Aug 19th 2012, #3
RE: Self-confidence and writing, apprentice1, Aug 20th 2012, #5
RE: Self-confidence and writing, apprentice1, Aug 20th 2012, #4
RE: Self-confidence and writing, Dreamerscove, Aug 19th 2012 #2
RE: Self-confidence and writing, apprentice1, Aug 20th 2012, #6
RE: Self-confidence and writing, mskitty, Aug 22nd 2012, #7
RE: Self-confidence and writing, crimson_angel, Aug 26th 2012, #8
RE: Self-confidence and writing, MarFisk, Sep 02nd 2012, #9

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