Blog Chain: Art of Revising

Whoa! I almost totally missed this blog post chain. July has been a whirlwind for me. But I'm back and raring to go! The wonderful and talented Sarah asked this round's topic.

How do you handle revisions? Do you revise as you're writing, or do you wait until you've gone through beta readers and crit partners to revise? How soon after you finish do you begin your revisions?

According to the bylaws of my therapy group, Writer's Anonymous, I must admit that... sigh... I have ORS: Obsessive Revising Syndrome. Yes! I admit it! I'm a compulsive reviser. I handle revisions to the point where I'm revising more than actually writing.

But I swear that I'm getting better!

When the writing bug first struck, I would revise after just a few paragraphs. PARAGRAPHS! You can't imagine the amount of time it took to finish one page - let alone a chapter. When I finally noticed how slow I was going, I cut myself back slowly to every page and then to every chapter. I still do this on occasion, like a nail biter examining each finger looking for a sliver of an overhang to start gnawing on.

At this point in my life, I'm to where I revise after about every five to ten chapters. If I have an idea on how many chapters there will be then I sort of split up the story into three sections and revise. One day I hope to get to the point where I'll write a full manuscript straight through and then revise. Perhaps, one day, I'll even send a completely written manuscript to beta readers and crit partners without one smidgen of a revising note.


I have ORS - Obsessive Revising Syndrome. But I am getting better.

Visit the talented Christine who posted before me and the incredible Kat who will post tomorrow.

Something Fun for a Saturday

I found this fun and cool site from Eric at Working my Muse. It will analyze snippets of your writing and tell you which successful writer your style and voice is most like. I decided to try it out, first using this story.

I write like
Stephen King
I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Out of curiosity, I decided to try another. This time I took it from my chapter entry for the Primal Blogfest post. The snippet is from the suspense manuscript, The Stone Man. This is what came up.

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Hmm. I never read his works before. Okay. I wasn't sure if I wanted confirmation that I wrote strictly by the styles of Stephen King, or whether other authors I read would appear - as is sometimes a writer's want to emulate those authors they read.

I decided to do one more. The first sample was just a simple offhand event that happened to me one day. The second piece was pure fiction in the writing style I concentrate on. So what would happen if I analyzed something completely different? I entered a children's short story I wrote a while back.

I write like
Stephen King
I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Okay, I write like Stephen King and David Foster Wallace(I did it once more, with a Fractured Fairy Tale, and it came up as David Foster Wallace). Split even tie!

This was an entertaining exercise. Do please try it out for yourself.

Blog Chain: A Time and A Place Still Far Away

The awesome BJ has this round’s topic. Eric posted before me, and Christine will post afterward. The question at hand is:

Is there a place you like to write that's extra special? Have you carved out a writing niche? Is there a certain time of day (or night) when the words fall into place, and your brain is focused on nothing but writing?

I write everywhere and any time that affords a comfy seat and a quiet atmosphere with my I-pod blaring through the ear buds. It used to be here in my apartment. (Please excuse the fuzziness in the photo.)

Until I began having problems with my living arrangements when someone tried to break in back in May. When that endeavor failed, as in the person announced his attempted robbery plans loudly on his cell phone outside my open kitchen window beforehand, which allowed me to take the necessary precautions, I began having problems with the tenants living below my apartment (odd coincidence this started right after someone failed to break in . . . oh well).

Anyway, I contacted the landlord on June 4 who planned on moving me into a different place (currently being remodeled) so I wouldn’t have to break my lease or deal with anymore shenanigans. I was supposed to move in on July 1. Yet the landlord called June 29 to inform me it would take another month for the construction. So I’m not in my new place and haven’t any photos to share.

Such is life.

At the moment I’m visiting a friend, enjoying the relative peace and quiet. Perhaps when things settle down I’ll do another post about my new place and where I’ll carve out my special writing niche.
On brighter news, Sarah Bromley, fellow Blog Chain participant, has just accepted an offer of representation for her novel. Go give her major props! And Christine has graciously given a glimpse of her new book cover (novel release date is Oct. 15th 2010). Go check it out also!