I could certainly do with a shady tree (with a power-point) right now – my first session into revising the mess that is meant to be a draft was suffered through 35 degrees Celcius heat and 95% humidity. It’s swelteringly hot and muggy here in Sydney, but with forceful thunderstorms each day also.
So, it appears my revision sessions will be quite literally sweating it out.
Having taken a huge five days away from my draft (I wanted to retain momentum) I searched out all the solid advice I could find for how to revise, planned out a multi-leveled program of pass-throughs, and began.
Advice on Revising
For those about to start revision, here’s a list of great resources I used when developing my own revision plans. More can be found on my tumblr resource blog, Everything 4 Writers – under the #revision filter.
- Holly Lisle‘s 5 month long How to Revise Your Novel program along with her 7 Day Revision Class.
- Marg Lawson‘s Lecture packets for the Deep Edits system, Character Emotions and Body Language and Dialogue Cues
- Chuck Wendig‘s 25 Steps to Edit the Unmerciful Suck Out of your Story http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2013/09/10/25-steps-to-edit-the-unmerciful-suck-out-of-your-story/
- Anne Lyle‘s Revising Your Novel in 10 Easy Steps http://annelyle.com/blog/2012/07/03/revising-your-novel-in-10-easy-steps/
- Gwen Herendezes’ Revising Through Scrivener http://gwenhernandez.com/2014/02/19/revisions-in-scrivener/ taught me to use document notes for revision notes, scene cards, and full-screen mode for read-throughs.
- James Scott Bell‘s book: Revision and Editing (Writer’s Digest) and blog post: Revising Your Novel, http://wherethemapends.com/special_features/Bell_Revising.htm, the later introduces the 20,000-Word Step Back which equates to the fifty pages or quarter novel approach I planned for then broke because of a. the heat and b. my discovery that I’ve actually written three novels in the one draft, calling for some drastic changes.
- A four post series at Go Teen Writers on Editing in Layers http://goteenwriters.blogspot.com.au/2014/05/editing-in-layers-seven-things-to.html and a seven part series on Tumblr the dancing writer, http://thedancingwriter.tumblr.com/post/101817385698/revision-checklist-series-seven-exposition drew out the multi-layered passes I use through my revision checks. (Macro/big picture, line editing onwards)
- Elissa Field’s somewhat irregular printout strategy https://elissafield.wordpress.com/2013/07/08/novel-revision-strategies-printing-for-read-through/ combined with Darcy Pattinson‘s Shrunken Manuscript concept http://writetodone.com/revise-novel-glance/ (which is also featured in Kate Messner‘s craft book: Real Revision)
- Darcy Pattinson‘s After the 1st Draft 37 page PDF free from her website (she now does a video course and revision retreat on similar topics, but the URL link to this freebie is still there).
- Various other web articles and checklists of questions.
More resources can be found in my scrapbook collection with hashtag #revision on Everything 4 Writers http://everything4writers.tumblr.com/search/revision