Admit it – you hate your inner editor. He or she is always looming over your work and critiquing every little detail as you work. It can be extremely frustrating when trying to write your first draft, but your inner editor is actually a great person to have around once you sit down to revise your novel. However, your inner editor needs some help from you during this revision period so that he or she can do the work properly. Here are some of the ways you can make the revision process a hospitable – nay, pleasant – experience for you and your inner editor both!
The first things you need to do when sitting down to revise is to distance this part of the work from the writing. Revising is a different skill and needs to remain separate from the writing part of yourself and your environment. Don’t sit down at the computer where you wrote your novel to do your revision. This is a huge mistake. Instead, wait for a month or so to even start the revision process. This period will allow you to start building ideas and restoring your creative energy. When you’re ready to start you should change the font on your manuscript and print it out. Take your printed manuscript somewhere far away from your computer, like a coffee shop or cafe, and start the revision process. Bring a pen and paper and write out your new ideas by hand. It can also be very useful to revise out of order so that you don’t end up spending all your time revising your first chapter over and over. All of these methods will help separate you from the writing phase and give your inner editor the opportunity to work his or her magic!
Your attitude during this process is going to have the biggest impact on how well the process goes. Try not to get bogged down by the drudgery of the process. Don’t think of it as simply editing your work. Think of it as a new, different type of creative process. It can, believe it or not, actually be fun! It’s all a matter of how you perceive it. Resilience is key here because it’s easy for your inner editor to turn on you and turn into a breeder of self-doubt. Try to keep yourself on-task and positive! That being said, it’s still part of the work process, which means that you should set yourself a deadline so that you stay on task and don’t have too much fun.
These tips are all extremely helpful for allowing yourself to let your inner editor take over during the revision period of your writing. Following this advice might actually make your revision process enjoyable!
Read the full article here: Revising Your Novel – Make It A Playground, Not A Torture Chamber
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