Thursday, February 11, 2010

Writing IS Rewriting (and rewriting, and rewriting some more)



Good writing is essentially rewriting.
~ Roald Dahl



 I have rewritten — often several times — every word I have ever published. My pencils outlast their erasers. 
~ Vladimir Nabokov


The best writing is rewriting.
~ E. B. White

I can’t write five words but that I change seven.
~ Dorothy Parker

I don’t write easily or rapidly. My first draft usually has only a few
elements worth keeping. I have to find what those are and build from them and throw out what doesn’t work, or what simply is not alive.
~ Susan Sontag

The pleasure is the rewriting: The first sentence can’t be written until the final sentence is written. This is a koan-like statement, and I don’t mean to sound needlessly obscure or mysterious, but it’s simply true. The completion of any work automatically necessitates its revisioning.
~ Joyce Carol Oates

I can’t understand how anyone can write without rewriting everything over and over again.
~ Leo Tolstoy

Writing and rewriting are a constant search for what it is one is saying.
~ John Updike


Yes, as you may have guessed, I am in the revision/rewriting phase of my current novel. I am about halfway through doing the second draft and I actually enjoy the pruning and the experimenting, improving and polishing; making it the best it can be. (I'll let you know how much I enjoy it on my 5th draft.)

 Ernest Hemingway once confided to George Plimpton that he rewrote the ending of "A Farewell to Arms" 39 times before he was satisfied. (THIRTY NINE TIMES!!)
"Why so many rewrites?" Plimpton asked.
Hemingway responded simply: "Because I wanted to get the words right."

Michael Crichton once said, "Books are not written-they're rewritten." 

Harry Shaw in "Errors in English and The Ways to Correct Them" (I highly recommend, by the way) says, "There is no such thing as good writing. There is only good rewriting."


So, that's where I've been. Rewrites. And shoveling snow. Lots and lots of shoveling snow.
Did I mention that I am so over snow? Me and snow, we're through. 

Oh, since I last posted the awesome Saints WON! 
(and a couple more MAJOR blizzards hit us...hence my new out-of-love with snow status)
And we watched Zombieland! My love affair with it is still very ON. 
Last night we watched Bright Star (@Keats), which I LOVED, but husband thought was boring. 

I will not be rewriting this post, or even checking it for typos...how you like me now? I'm a rebel. (I never edit my posts. Too lazy.)

How do you feel about rewrites?

Have a happy Friday!
~Lola 

5 comments:

Kazzy said...

Sometimes I will read my post at the end of the day and realized it has sat for hours with misspelled words... drives me nuts!

Of course, the more important rewriting has to do with content and flow.

Irish Gumbo said...

I don't believe I have ever written anything without rewriting it. Often several times. Hemingway's response is spot on: You have to want to get the words right.

And that snow? An inconsiderate lover, leaving us to reap the whirlwind...:)

Alexandra Crocodile said...

i just wrote a short post about editing myself:) that's funny! it's a drag to change details, but you knbow you will be happier with the end result so it's definietely worth it!

La Belette Rouge said...

I like you lots, you lovely rebel!!!
p.s.Send me your snow and I will send you the eternal sunshine that is L.A.

Terresa said...

Yipes, 39 times!! That number will stick out in my head for some time, I believe.

Sometimes I like rewriting/editing more, it's the fine tuning and pulling the image out of the sculpture/marble so to speak, that is both unnerving and thrilling.

Best to you in your rewriting. You are on track, girl!

May your pen be mighty

May your pen be mighty

About Me

My Photo
Lola Sharp
My name is Lola. (I'm not a showgirl) Yes, L-O-L-A Lola. It's the least of my worries. Let's move on, shall we? This blog is mostly about my misadventures on the journey to publication and beyond. My passion for lush prose, quirky characters, art, music, literature, performing arts and anything creative will be a major theme here. This journey of mine will not always be pretty. Much like rubbernecking a train wreck, I know sometimes you just can't help but look at the carnage that is often my life. So strap on your neck brace, helmet and 5-point harness and come along for the ride! Licentia poetica.
View my complete profile

Friends

Search

Loading...

Connect

Create the MAGIC

Create the MAGIC

"Our imagination flies — we are its shadow on the earth."

~Vladimir Nabokov

Pure Imagination

Pure Imagination

not all who wander are lost

not all who wander are lost

drink the wild air!

drink the wild air!

Shine

Shine

coffee & doodle art love

coffee & doodle art love

Real Beauty

Real Beauty

Badass Ms. Parker

Badass Ms. Parker

my zen

my zen

I write therefore I am

I write therefore I am

#winning

#winning

NaNo '13 Word-o-Meter

Nano '12 Winner

Nano '12 Winner

Jared = YUM

Jared = YUM

Radiohead=brilliant

Radiohead=brilliant

Music Inspires

Music Inspires

I ♡ Regina

I ♡ Regina

Writing to Snow Patrol

Writing to Snow Patrol

Depeche Mode Inspires

Powered by Blogger.