You’ve finished your novel, you’ve taken a break from it, and then you come back and see it is one awful mess.
Okay. Step back, take a deep breath, and scream. This always helps. Then read through it. Is it as awful as it first looked? Is it worse?
Okay, so now to the question. Should I re-write my novel? Should I open a new document or grab a new peice of paper, and start over from scratch, using your first draft to take the characters and the main plot, but changing everything else? Long answer short: It’s up to you.
Yeah that probably wasn’t very help, so I’ll quickly give you the two sides of the question. Re-writing, or not re-writing.
Let’s jump right in!
Once you’ve decided that your novel is so much of a mess that you don’t want to touch it and you just want to start over, keeping the main ideas but changing everything else, then go for it. Some times it’s faster than keeping what you’ve got and trying to shape it into something publishing worthy.
Some of my older stuff that is just garbage I’m going to re-write in the future. I guess I can’t say that they are total garbage because of the fact that I want to re-write them. I love the characters! I love the main idea! It is simply the actual writing that is garbage. So in this case, I’m going to re-write. Now let’s go over to the other side of the question.
For my first novel, A Silence in the Shadows, I probably should have thrown the first draft into the garbage and totally re-written it from scratch, but I didn’t. I pounded away at it with all of my heart. I got feedback, edited, revised, smashed through all the plot holes and fixed them, made new plot holes accidentaly and fixed them too, and now, just now, I’m beginning to near it being publishing worthy. It took a long time. I started writing the first draft in August of 2016!! It’s been over two years! So yes, it saved me a lot of writing time, but not a lot of editing time. Now, with the polished novel nearly completed, I think it probably would have been wiser if I had just totally re-written it, but now it doesn’t really matter. You get to the same place in the end, just sometimes it take more effort either on the editing, or on the writing.
So now you can decide for yourself. Re-writing, or not re-writing. It’s up to you.
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Talk to me! Have you decided yet if you are going to re-write? Have you re-written or not re-written in the past? How did those experiences turn out? Are you currently editing a project? Or are you re-writing one? Tell me about it! I’d love to know! 😀