Monday, November 14, 2011

Writing vs. Revising: Grass is Always Greener on the OTHER Side!

I'm amused by the amount of contortion the goat in the picture is going through to get to the greener grass. Um yeah. That's pretty much what being a writer feels like sometimes! Last month after I'd been editing for so long, I declared with complete assurance that drafting was far easier and more fun than editing.

Yeah. Until I start drafting again.

I've been NaNoWriMo-ing the rough draft of Book 3 in my trilogy, and today I was thinking the whole time: I can't wait until this gets done so I can start editing again. Editing is so much better than drafting!!

Then I remembered I'd thought the exact opposite a month ago. The thing is, to be honest, both writing and revising have their perks and downsides. It's easier to feel productive when writing a first draft. Literally productive even - I mean, that little word count number just keeps going up! It's so satisfying. I set a word count to reach for the day, I reach it, then I feel satisfied that it's been a good day's work accomplished.

Revising on the other hand, is pretty amorphous. A lot of the time you are cutting out entire sections, then re-writing, so if you're looking at word count, some days it goes down!

But here's the down-side of drafting. They're called rough drafts for a reason. Because sometimes it can be really rough. And just plain sucky. It makes me antsy to get to editing so I can fix it all up, and see the bigger picture. So I can make it STOP SUCKING! Plus I half think I'm a better editor than writer. I'm better at shaping the mass of words and plot after there's already a sizeable chunk there to start with. So I try to remind myself of that as I keep writing. I'm giving myself a big chunk of clay to work with later.

But I have the patience of a gnat, and just want it to be pretty now! I hit 20,000 words today, so then I just try to think: well, even if can't quite get hold on the process, or how best to both write and revise, even if I feel like I'm just bumbling around blindly with everything I do--at least it's still moving forward. Gotta take what you can get sometimes.

1 comment:

  1. Congrats on reaching 20,000 words in a day and good luck with your drafting.