Revising: Breaking Through Inertia

Well, it took a month or two longer than I had wanted it to, but I’m finally to the point that I’m starting the second draft of GET CUPID. (A title that has grown on me, which I can never tell if that’s a good thing or not. You get used to a title, and it’s hard to tell if it’s good or not.)


One of the problems of being a part-time writer instead of a full-time writer is that I write in stages for the most part. There’s the plotting stage, where all I’m doing is plotting the book. Then comes the actual writing of the first draft. It’s all new, every day. And then comes revision. Each step is so different from the others. Each step requires a new skill set. Which is to be expected, I suppose. But the thing that really gets me is that each step arrives just after I finish the last step.

Allow me to explain.

By the time I’m finished writing the first draft of a book, I’ve been doing new material for a good three or four months at least. I remember what I’m doing, the cobwebs are clear, and I’m just humming along. Shifting from that over to plotting a new world and character and conflict–it’s very jarring. And then jumping over to revising that draft–that’s an even bigger jump.

Each time I have to make the transition, it feels like I’m learning what I’m doing all over again. And I don’t know how it is for you, but when I personally am supposed to do new things, I tend to stall. To look for other, more comfortable things to do. Isn’t there a new story somewhere that needs writing? What about some more plotting? Anything but actually revising.

The frustrating thing is that I know full well that once I dive in and get hands dirty, it’ll all come back to me, and I’ll be humming along again. But it’s the standing at the edge of that pool, knowing the water’s cold, and knowing it’s going to be uncomfortable–that’s what gets me.

The good news is that I just finished my read through of the first draft of GET CUPID, and I’m very happy with it. Not with the shape that it’s in right now, but with my vision of it once it’s revised. It’s got a lot of potential, and it’s not too far off from what I originally pictured when I set off to write the book. VODNIK was a mixed bag of light tone and dark material. TARNHELM is decidedly darker than VODNIK. GET CUPID? This is pretty much fun through and through. Not that there’s no conflict. But Eldin, the main character . . . he’s a blast. So optimistic. So outgoing. He was a very fun character to get to know, if that makes sense.

I hope to introduce you to him someday.

In the meantime . . . maybe I should stop blogging and start revising.

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