Sunday, 14 December 2008

Same old problem.

Do you remember a few weeks (might have been a bit longer than that) I was talking about editing my novel and how I couldn't stop myself tinkering with it? Well I'm still in that dilemma. I'm currently working on chapter 10 or at least I was a couple of minutes ago and I started to think about what Cally said. She told me that she stopped fiddling with her book (currently accepted and due for publication) when she bacame sick of looking at it. At that stage I was heartily sick of looking at the first three chapters that I had been tweaking for a while. So i left them and got on with the rest of the book and am currently as I say on chapter 10. So I'm asking myself should I go back and maybe work on say chapters 4 - 6 until I am sick of them or should I just plough on to the end?
Okay, so I'm thinking that I'll plough on for now. I'm thinking that I should work my way through the entire book because it's been a while since it was finished and I'm interested to read on and see how I developed the idea. (This book was finished before the bad stuff that happened last year so was stuck in a metaphoric drawer for a long time.)
Yes that's what I'll do...decision made...maybe.
Thanks for listening. I knew that you'd help me see sense.


KAREN said...

I'm smiling with recognition. I'm trying to apply the same philosophy to the novel that I seem to manage when I'm writing a short story - get it down, then go back and tweak but it's hard. As soon as I start reading back over what I've done the temptation to edit creeps in. S'pse the message is...don't look back!

Easier said than done, but good luck anyway :o)

Calistro said...

I'd suggest ploughing on for now and then go back to chapter 4 when you've finished. That way, because you've been through all the other chapters, chapter 4 won't be as clear in your mind so you'll be a bit fresher when you tackle it again. Good luck with the editing - I know how exhausting it can be!

Gonna be a writer said...

Oh Karen, how I had to fight the temptation to go back and tweak just a bit more. It was a battle but I managed it.
I think you are right Calistro, I need to get through it all. Apart from anything else like I said in the original post, I'm curious about it. There was an episode in chapter 9 which even though I wrote took me by surprise when I read it. I think that if I get to the end I'll be able to go back to chapter 4 with a different perspective and maybe introduce things that will become clear later on.

Debs said...

I find it hard to stop tweaking with my redraft.

Gonna be a writer said...

You've just got to fight the urge Debs

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure about when you should stop editing a book in general. I wonder if there's a danger of editing some chapters more than others, though. Would this then lead to an inconsistency in the quality over different chapters? For example, it seems that many people spend a lot of time polishing the first three chapters, those being the ones that are often submitted to begin with. Having a less worked-on chapter four could result in a bit of a "dip" at that point in the book, perhaps.

My instincts tell me that I ought to be systematic about the way I edit, but I don't know if it will work out that way.

Gonna be a writer said...

I know exactly what you mean. It is a worry that some parts won't be as polished as others but I think that you need to be wary of changing things for the sake of it.

Annie Wicking said...

Hi GBW, Please could you drop by my blog and pick up you Christmas gift.

Merry Christmas my dear friend and I hope you like it. You wouldn't believe the lengths I went to, to get one for you. I hope you like it.

Best wishes,


Gonna be a writer said...

Annie, I love my dragon and I will cherish her forever. She seems to have settled in very well.