Four days ago I set out on a quest. That quest was to work on my novel every day until it is done (and hopefully one day published). No more of this on-again off-again spurts of working on it because of NaNoWriMo or working on it for my thesis. But that means I have to take this editing challenge head on.
Every time I go and try to work on my novel, I realize how much I have no idea what I am doing. Yes, I know how to write, and I tend to think I am pretty good at it. But crafting a complete novel with all its intricacies is down right crazy difficult. That’s not to say I ever expected it to be easy, but there are times where I don’t know what I should work on and get overwhelmed by everything that needs to be done to the point that I am drowning in my thoughts.
Right now I have elected to reread it as my starting point. It’s been a couple of months since I have even looked at my novel (which is depressing in its own right). So I figured reacquainting myself with it probably makes the most sense. I’ve noticed I can be repetitive, my mindset wanting my reader to get it. But one thing that my instructor for my thesis course told me was that I need to trust that my reader will understand, because my reader is smart. So go you reader! I will keep deleting those lines that you can infer yourself!
But those kinds of edits are easy, and sometimes extremely obvious. Where I run into problems is when I am reading a chapter and think, I need to add more here, something is missing. But then I remember that other scene and the ending that I already know needs fixed. Where do I even begin? I find it difficult to edit plot once it already exists. But its something I’m going to have to overcome, because I can see it being inevitable at this point.
So where do I go from here? Once I’ve managed to get through what I have done, my biggest problem facing me is do I add onto it or make the decision that this is better as two separate books? If I am adding, do I add the new scenes and then take a crack at the old ones? I DON’T KNOW! But I will figure it out once I get there. Because there is one thing I know. And that is that I love writing too much to let the challenge overtake me. These characters need to be loved by people other than me.
So for now, I am taking it one day at a time and figuring it out as I go. If you have any advice, I would love to hear it! I might even make another post and compile what I’ve received to share with all the other authors out there who are in my shoes.