Hi-ho, Hi-ho, off to revise I go…


So the revisions on the vampire story are coming along, albeit slowly. I’m having a weird experience with it, though. As I read along, I’m finding that what I wrote in the first draft is often not matching up with the flow of words I hear in my head. It’s as if I’m reading someone else’s story, and expecting to see the words that should have been written, and not the stilted, rough draft I’m reading over. I guess that’s good. Lots of stuff getting moved around, deleted, rewritten. The only parts that bother me are the ones where I actually can’t think of a better way to phrase something, because I figure the whole thing could stand improvement.

And I was both excited and dismayed to find two deer standing in my front yard this morning when I opened the blinds. Lovely as they are, and such a surprise (I’ve seen them across the street in the neighbor’s yard but never in my own), I realized to my horror they were munching on my roses. So I went out and tried to have a talk with them, but they were having none of it. They sort of wandered off but seemed far less alarmed by me than I would have expected. Sign of the times, I guess, when the wildlife isn’t all that disturbed by the encroaching humans. I hope I won’t have to give up on growing roses now that they’ve found mine. And I was finally getting some lovely new canes starting from the rootstocks on several of them! Argh.

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21 thoughts on “Hi-ho, Hi-ho, off to revise I go…

  1. “the first draft is often not matching up with the flow of words I hear in my head” – I always have that problem. Like they all ways say…”Great writing is in the rewrite”

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  2. Now I can see how people become obsessed with revising and never feel anything is “done.” And it’s amazing how rereading the first draft, it’s so obvious how it should be, instead of what I originally wrote. Ack. I feel like I’m not making any sense.

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  3. I always think of the first draft as “the draft to get the basic concept written down before forgetting what you wanted to do”. But I have a problem where I want it to be perfect first time. So I think I get what you are going through

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  4. That’s a good way to look at it, and that’s basically what I did with this. I knew it was pretty skeletal, and I was going to have to really flesh things out later which is part of what I’m doing now. I’m adding layers and depth to the characters, which they desperately needed. At least that’s what I think I’m doing 🙂

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  5. “I love revisions. (me: multi-multi-reviser). It’s first drafts that give me a headache. With each revision, everything becomes richer and deeper”

    That is so totally my experience, GS. I absolutely hate writing first drafts.

    Good luck with your revisions, DD!

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  6. Thanks, Tasha and Jenna! It’s kind of surprising me how much got neglected on the first draft, you’d think I’d written it at some breakneck pace. In actuality it took nearly a year to get to this point (allowing the month detour for NaNo when I didn’t touch it). Which, I suppose, while holding down a full-time job with a long commute is not so bad.

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    1. Major kudos to you for writing and working. It takes a lot of commitment to do so and I salute and applaud for it. 🙂

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  7. That schism between what you hear in your head and what’s on the page is your true talent, pushing aside every obstacle and travel down your arms to your fingertips so you’ll commit to the page. Thrilling, really!

    If you can find a spray product in the gardening center called Hot Pepper Wax, it might keep the deer from munching on your roses – I know it keeps the smaller critters from eating up my tulips in the spring, but for some reason it is not easy to find (I bought a big bottle of the concentrated formula a few years ago, and fortunately it has lasted me this long.) If not, you could try making your own by mixing up a few spoons of the hottest Hot Sauce you can find with a pint of water in a spray bottle, and using it to mist the flowers/buds – it doesn’t hurt the animals but the taste might discourage them.

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    1. Aha, ok, I read e-mail before the blog this morning. Ignore my e-mail response 😉 I’ll definitely try it. I thought about just sprinkling some cayenne pepper around and on the plants, too.

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  8. Speaking of revisions:

    The last half of that first sentence should read:

    pushing aside every obstacle and travelLING down your arms to your fingertips so you’ll commit IT to the page.

    I have no excuse, really – I’ve already had 2 cups of coffee.

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    1. Well, that’s what happens with my tendency to get off on a tangent 🙂 I should have done a separate post about the deer. My son saw them in our backyard shortly after I caught them chowing down on my roses. I wish they’d eat the blackberry bushes instead.

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  9. Maybe I’m getting A.D.D. or something, but I firmly believe it’s the tangents that give us something to write about …

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