I've been absent these four months because I needed to devote more time to writing. (This seems to be something like labor....the closer to the end, the longer the contractions. An hour used to do, then two... now, I'm only breaking for class, the toilet, and...erm...something like 3 hours of sleeping. AHHHH! It's killing me!)
To those of you who have successfully *finished* their novels--and sold them--what did your final stages look like? You know... rewriting, deleting characters, changing cultural details, etc. Were you madly obsessed and sleeping fitfully? ;) (Is it normal to curl up in a ball on the floor, for hours, holding your head while rocking?)
I am, of course, not talking about the pollishing stage; I'm talking about the "now I've written the darn thing; what do I really have here?" stage.
All war stories appreciated.
March 25th, 2003, 03:19 PM
Guess nobody finishes anything around here. :p
Well, I have trouble decided now is the time to stop editing. In the past I've just arbitrarily decided it's "done now." But I never really know where to draw the line, there's always some other way for the story to be improved.
That's why I like to write shorter pieces, rather than novels.
March 25th, 2003, 07:33 PM
I can't say as I noticed any particular difference with the "finishing" stage, as much as between the first draft stage and all of the editing, regardless of when it occurred. In my mind the book evolved in three large stages: outline, initial draft, and many re-edited drafts. All three stages require a certain level of creativity and a certain amount of discipline to pull off.
Every author approaches these things differently, of course, but there is no real reason that you need to gnash your teeth at the editing stage. Consider it all part of the creative process; just as your outline (if you used one) is just a skeleton of your eventual story, so too are your various drafts just closer and closer "copies" of your eventual finished work. The trimming (or adding) of characters, the moving around of scenes, the refinement of dialogue, are all areas where your creativity is improving upon what you've already laid out, and shouldn't be a "chore." I like to think of it the way an artist touches up a painting, adding highlights here and there, covering up a rough spot and painting in something a little better once the whole image can been seen; that sort of thing.
March 25th, 2003, 11:47 PM
Writing a story is the hard part, editing it is the fun part where you can finally relax and polish your story.
March 26th, 2003, 08:13 AM
I find the writing the fun part. It's the editing I don;t like, except when the rewriting flows well.
Sorry, Jenn, not sold yet.
March 26th, 2003, 12:52 PM
My last stage consisted of a constant stream of e.mails between myself and a demon from hell ( a dear friend, who was acting as editor for me) He helped with my grammar and made suggestions(about various things) some I took, some I ignored.
Between us we beat the beast into submission.
But the final word on everything was mine. It was like sending a child to school, but in the end it is you that tuck them into bed.
March 26th, 2003, 11:36 PM
Well actually, it's all fun is what I meatn to say. Just that the main pressure's off once you're in the editing stage.