A3Writer: The Horror of Revision
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Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Horror of Revision

     I love writing. I love the creative process, and how satisfying it is to look back and say "I wrote that." I feel productive after having done it. It's something measurable and achievable. I can set a goal to write X number of words per day, session, week, whatever. It all adds up in the long run, too.
     Revision is not so fun. It takes a different part of the brain, and is a different skill altogether. I have to somehow merge the creative and analytical parts of my brain at the level of language. It takes time, and after awhile my brain feels like mush from staring at the words. I also can't measure it. Inevitably words are cut, words are changed, words are added, and if I tried to keep track of all that, I'd be an accountant. So when I get done revising a section, chapter, whatever, I don't feel as if I've accomplished much. What did I just spend all that time doing? Did I actually change it for the better? It's a frustratingly tedious task to revise my own writing.
     I do know it's necessary, so I crack my knuckles and set to scanning the pages/screen/kindle/hologram (I wish) for ways to improve the writing. I just wish the process itself was more akin to writing.
     So, if anyone is out there (chirping crickets included) how do you handle going about revising?

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