OK, when I thought up this title I thought it would be Easy. I was wrong. You see I'm still working on finding my writers groove so when I began to revise my WIP I quickly realized I needed some direction. I'd revised articles, academic papers and even short stories. Revising an entire book: a whole new beast. So what did I do? What I always do, I consulted my blogging friends. Here are just a few of the things I've learned so far...
1- Like any piece of writing, you need to let it cool off and get some distance. That was harder than I thought. When I finished my first draft I was so Excited I wanted to plunge right in and was afraid I'd lose my momentum if I put it away. DO IT ANYWAY! Fresh eyes are a must.
2-There are two kinds of writers, putter-inners and taker-outers. I tend to be a putter-inner. Early in the creation of my WIP I learned that I had to push through noting areas that needed more. So going in, I knew that I was going to have some research and more writing to do.
3-Practice Riff-writing. This is different than free-writing because it is focused on a specific part of your WIP. Choose a place to "jump-off" , a scene, a characters feeling any place you feel needs to be Expanded in some way. Then write everything you can think of. These "riffs" can be folded into your WIP.
4- Have several other projects in the works so you can go back and forth. Your brain can get tired when so focused on one portion of your book. Taking a break allows your brain to renew itself, you Exercise it in another direction.
5-Prepare a checklist and chunk your finished manuscript. There are as many different checklists out there as there are writers. It would be Efficacious to create a checklist that reflects your known weaknesses as a writer. Revise your manuscript in small bites.
These are only a small number of the ideas that you can Enlist during your revision process. What I realized is there is a certain amount of Envisioning (preparation) that needs to occur prior to revising so one doesn't feel lost or overwhelmed. I'm still figuring that out.
Here are a few links to things I found Exceptionally helpful.
What has been the greatest piece of advice you have received on revision?