I’ve been working on this first revision round for over a month now, and it’s been tough. Editing and rewriting is my favorite part of the process, but what I’m doing right now — trying to figure out how to braid all the pieces together in a new fashion — is really challenging. I’ve spent more time thinking than anything, and it’s hard to not feel disappointed in myself when the words and pages aren’t yet looking the way I want them to.
A couple posts ago I talked about how I was making a new outline for everything before rewriting. It didn’t take me long to figure out that that wasn’t working. So I had to switch gears. I reworked the first quarter of the novel to get a clearer sense of how things were starting to fit. And then I had to step back again for another look at the overall arc.
I’ve been trying a new practice with color-coded notecards — I taped them up on the blank wall I usually reserve for yoga inversions. Trying to get a new perspective here. So now I’ve mapped out the main body of the novel in categories and timelines, and I’m shifting cards around, adding in new pieces, trying to restructure it that way.
For me, every single project requires a different process. This is simultaneously infuriating…and also part of the thrill. I really love finding new techniques and experiments in attempt to nudge a story closer to where I want it to land.