If there are two words that stir dread in this writer, it’s these. I know, I know, I’m supposed to love to revise. (And I do, in the same way I “love” other things that are good for me, like yogurt and kale.) To revise is to make new–and hopefully better. Back to the drawing board. A new lease, blah, blah, blah.
Here’s the thing: revision requires imagination (Daily Prompt).
Revision demands that we unplug from everything but our WIP and allow the mind–and the plot and character and theme, etc.–to change. A WIP off course! Yes, this can–and even should–happen when we revise. Call it giving over control to the muse or your writer’s instinct or your better judgement, but it does require a loss of control.
Oh, we’ll be in control of our WIPs again. We just have to wait for the editing phase. Can’t rush these phases, though (so says my chapter three I’m currently re-seeing). The late, great Donald M. Murray tells us so, too:
We confuse revision, which is re-seeing, re-thinking, re-saying with editing which is making sure the facts are accurate, the words are spelled correctly, the rules of grammar and punctuation are followed.
–from Donald M. Murray‘s classic, The Craft of Revision
A tribute to Murray from a former writing student
*Photo taken from my village’s community pier. (Credit: Bill Moon. Thanks, Dad!) This foggy scene seemed right for this post, since working through a revision often feels like charting a course through thick fog!
Are you revising at the moment? Does it require a leap of the imagination for you? Weigh in here.