View from the revision cave

So, I’m revising again. Because I like to. Everyone needs a hobby. This is mine.

One of the first things I did was to list out the scenes in each chapter, essentially an outline, using the method from Cheryl Klein’s Second Sight book (I’m essentially doing the exercises listed here, along with some from another book).

Here’s what I discovered:

  • Wow. There’s a lot of crap in this book. I’m not sure I’m actually the one who put it there.
  • Why is there a chapter with only one scene?
  • Why is there one with seven?

To be fair, the very first thing I did was strip out the self-contained subplot for revamping and revision. So that lone scene in its own chapter wasn’t always quite so lonely. That fat chapter hoarding seven scenes? No clue. It’s like that reality TV show about hoarders, only in manuscript format.

I’m doing a lot of work with structure. Because that self-contained subplot? It’s in diary format, which is why it’s so easy to pull from the story. Weaving it back in? Yeah. Not so much.

I think I’m going to need that T-shirt.

7 Comments

Filed under Reading & Writing, Writing, YA

7 responses to “View from the revision cave

  1. Haha. So back to MacKenna, huh? I;ll get Speechless notes to you by Wednesday evening. Promise.

  2. I like that clever shirt.

    I’m in the revision cave with my novel as well. It’s always alarming how much extraneous crud there is to muck out. The manuscript is 110,000 words, and I won’t be surprised if it sinks well below 100,000.

    Remember what Hemingway said (a quote I used to keep taped to my desk): “The first draft of anything is shit.”

  3. Yes, it’s the manuscript that will not die.

  4. Scott, yes, but what does Hemingway say about the ninth draft. This is my reach-exceeds-my-grasp manuscript. So. Yeah. Once more into the breach.

  5. Just wanted to let you know that Macmillan Audio is offering 3 audio books to participants in the War Through the Generations Civil War Challenge. Go here to enter!

  6. Thank you! I already added my comment.

  7. I tend to revise when I find it hard to move forward. Not sure if that’s good or bad. ^^;

    That shirt needs to find its way into my closet.

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