Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Manuscript Revision: Write Fast, Edit Slow

Drafts/Rewrites/Revisions/Edits/Polishing.
Whatever you choose to call it, I'm up to my elbows in it.


When I'm sitting quietly with my thoughts, I imagine revisions not unlike performing surgery. Or pruning bonsai. Any growth that does not belong gets eliminated. Every word must be justified; every sentence, every paragraph, every chapter edited to its most honest, authentic shape. Art and function must coexist to move the story forward.




Marcus Aurelius said, “Nowhere, either with more quiet or more freedom from trouble, do we retreat than into our own souls,” into what Melville thought of as “that quiet, grass-growing place” where a writer ought to work.  I need the time, the spaciousness, to find that grass-growing place so that I can complete this WiP (the sexy working title: 'WiP 3'--I know you're jealous). I will be limiting my time online for the next few weeks, posting and commenting only sporadically (once or twice a week). I will zip through my google reader once/day, read and keep tabs on everyone. I'll check my email once/day and return any pressing emails. But I need to retreat into my writing self for a little while. 


One last note, I am looking for 2-ish serious critique partners/beta readers, in which I will give the same in return. If you are interested, please contact me via e-mail to further discuss: authorlolasharp at gmail dot com.







Love,
Lola

53 comments:

Cynthia Reese said...

Good luck, Lola! You're so right about making each word either do its job or take a hike. You can do it!

TechnoBabe said...

Work it, Lola! Good luck and I look forward to hearing about the finished product.

Chantel said...

Authenticity and life spring from solitude...and I will be wondering and supposing and perhapsing as I think of you while painting. May passion inspire and discipline refine...

smooches

SonshineMusic i.e. Rebecca T. said...

Good luck on revising! I have some of that to do myself. When April is over.

sarahjayne smythe said...

Good luck with the revisions. I know how painful they can be.

Aubrie said...

Good luck with your revisions!

Jaydee Morgan said...

I don't envy you - but good luck with the revisions!

Shelley Sly said...

Best of luck, darlin! You'll kick those revisions' butts! ;)

Jeff King said...

I hate revision... it takes all the fun out of writing for me.

Portia said...

Ah, I'm in a similar place. I've been putting my toes in the revision waters with my third book (called Anywhere) and I'm about to take the plunge into heavy edits.

Good luck on your revisions. My thoughts are with you!

Jemi Fraser said...

Good luck with the revisions - such joy (yes that was sarcasm in case you were wondering). :)

Candyland said...

Good luck girl! You can do it:)

laurel said...

Great minds think alike--I also wrote a post about revision today. Specifically having an openness and extravagance rather than trying to merely salvage. The quotes you mentioned sound like you're in the right frame of mind to revise with creativity and vigor.

Jen said...

I'm write there with you deep in revisions! It's tough business I was excited to get 3 chapters done this evening... they aren't easy!

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

I think I'll do better with revisions than writing the first draft. *sigh* Maybe I just wish I was further in the process. I loved your comment on my blog today. I felt truly encouraged by your words. Thanks so much :))

Niki said...

Good luck. I'm sure your book will be brilliant :o) XX

Bossy Betty said...

Good luck as you go through this phase!

Jon Paul said...

I thought a grass growing place was...well...something else.

Nevermind. :)

Crystal Cook said...

Good luck with your revisions!! And you're right, I am SO jealous of that title!! ;)

KarenG said...

Sometimes it just has to happen like this, because at least for me the blogging brain works different from the writing brain. I hope you get a lot done under your tree. The bonsai comparison is perfect!!

SAMUEL PARK said...

Ah! Love the bonsai tree! Good luck with the revisions--sounds like you're being super productive!

Kazzy said...

Best of luck, Lola. See you soon, hopefully.

Sophia said...

Good luck with your revision!
- Sophia.

Old Kitty said...

Good Luck with your revision and getting down n dirty serious with your novel!!

Take care
x

Laura Marcella said...

HAVE FUN! You'll get your revisions finished, and we'll be here when you get back to grace us with your lovely presence.

I love that picture of the girl typing on her laptop with the huge stack of books behind her! She probably resembles most of us, hahaha.

mo.stoneskin said...

Everyone needs a reading retreat from time to time. Enjoy.

Wendy Ramer said...

Love the photo of the girl on the laptop. Except that it's unrealistic...she would never have such good posture in that position. That's why God created trees - Nature's back support.

Falen said...

I'm always terrified that i'll prune too much, and my word count will be too little to justify publishing.
That would suck straight up...

Falen said...

hmmm, i posted a comment but it seems to have disappeared... i'll give it a moment to see if it pops up before re-writing it...

Talli Roland said...

Love the cool, calm photos. Makes me feel better about revisions already! Sometimes it's hard to keep your head about the whole thing.

Good luck Lola!

Summer said...

Good for you. I'm ready to run screaming into my dark hole, too. I think once this A-Z blogging challenge is over, I'm going to unplug for a little while.

Tara said...

I get that, girl! I am headed there soon. Inter-Breakville, here we come :)

Patti said...

I'm taking my revisions a lot slower this time around. Good luck with yours.

La Belette Rouge said...

Write fast and revise slow is something that took me a long time to understand. I used to write slow and then get burnt out by revision time.

E. Elle said...

Good luck, love. You'll get into the swing of it and knock those revisions out of this world! When you get the chance, I have an award for you at my blog. :o)

Angie Paxton said...

Good luck! Since your semi-neglect of those of us in blogger land is for a good cause we'll forgive you.

Alexandra Crocodile said...

I think it's really smart to take some time "off" to focus on writing - but I'll miss you here on the blogosphere;) And I have an award for you!

Watery Tart said...

I'm onto revisions too, so lets hope the moon is rightly placed for optimum improvement! I wish you a ton of luck getting everything JUST RIGHT!

disobedientwriter said...

Good luck! We'll be here when you come back :)

Lindsay (a.k.a Isabella) said...

Good luck with your revisions. It will be worth the time :)

DL Hammons said...

Good luck finding that quite place...grasshopper. :)

Susan Fields said...

I may have to follow your example and retreat into my quiet place soon. I hope your semi-break is very productive!

Susan Fields said...

Oops - I forgot to mention, there's something waiting for you at my blog. :)

Jenna Wallace said...

I'm sleeping, eating and breathing revision right now. Good luck!

Jen said...

I sent you an email about your critique request! Let me know if you get it :)

Kathryn Packer Roberts said...

Very good post. THanks! I need any little inspiration I can find these days, just to keep going.

otherworldlyone said...

I like your style. And echoing the above sentiments: good luck with your revisions.

See on your sidebar that you're a Ludo fan. :)ME TOO.

Paul C said...

Love the image of the bonsai to illustrate your theme. There is an element of patience and pruning involved in the revision process.

JEM said...

Perhaps trimming bonzai trees will make us better revisionists? (don't steal my dream)

Natalie said...

Blogging breaks are so needed. I hope you make some good progress while you're away.

Lola Sharp said...

Thank you for the support and well wishing, friends!!

Palindrome said...

I hate editing so I'm not looking forward to it but it's not going to be as bad as I fear. It's for a good cause.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Good luck with the revisions. It's my favorite part of writing. Good thing considering how long it takes. :D

May your pen be mighty

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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.
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