Friday, March 30, 2012

Revisions--my take

I look forward to revisions. I'm not one of those people who finish a book happy with it as it is. By the time I finish the last scene, I know of at least a few of the problem areas. Sometimes when I write the end, I'm wondering if it's the worst stuff I've ever written.

Revisions give me a chance to overhaul all those problem areas, the inconsistencies and fill in all the details I left out when I was in the zone writing.


Here's some of my revision list.

Let it rest at least a day. Everyone needs a little distance when going back through their work.

Keep your character descriptions and world notebooks handy (Don't forget to put the little stuff in there. That's the stuff that hangs me up for the longest when I have to go back and look for it, especially in the sci-fi, fantasy books where I might have a non-english word for it.)

spelling and grammar

consistency and readability- consistent description and characterization (especially in a series. Believe me I noticed when a character in a series I read suddenly turned up with a different color hair and a different personality.)

character growth and characterization

Use the senses to bring the reader into your world.

Keep an eye out for being verbs. Choose action over is, are, etc.

If you notice a word or phrase used too much, start cutting. It's probably in there around 1400 times. (Okay, an exaggeration, except maybe in the case of 'right now' in Embracing magic which I'm currently revising.)

At least once, read your book from start to finish as if you were a reader. If something throws you off on the read through, it will throw others off.

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