Monday, September 9, 2013

Conquering Edits Without Going Insane



Getting edits back from a critique partner can be exiting, exhilarating, and overwhelming.

 I just got a full MS critique chock full of red pen marks from my lovely CP/Beta and as I skimmed through it…it confirmed something that’s been inkling at the back of my mind for a while.  I need to re-write a bunch of scenes…. Not only that… but the ending just isn’t working. I have to re-write four chapters worth of the entire ending. And edit the whole thing of course.

Initiate flailing, rolling on ground and consumption of too much chocolate.

The world is over! I worked my butt off on this MS and now… now I need to cut and re-write huge chunks! Not only that, but I also noticed I needed to add an entire chapter for the second POV character.

I took a deep breath- got a pen and paper, and listed out all that I needed to do:

-Re-write 6 scenes.
-Write new chapter for POV2.
-Re-write the entire ending (sob).
-Get those edits done.

Okay…. Not so bad when you list them out like that… Next, I needed to plan out those six scenes I need to re-write. 

Now that I have the basic outline of what needs to be done. I had to decide what to do first. All the re-writes? The ending? The New chapter?

I chose to do the edits, those I don’t have to think too much about. I fix things and adjust things, fix the flow of parts, but nothing huge- nothing I can’t handle. Nothing creatively draining.

During my editing, I actually became randomly inspired to write that POV2 chapter. So I tackled that and went right back to editing- this time with a bounce to my step. I’m starting to feel good. I’m working towards something and I can see it shaping.

One step at a time. Don’t let the knowledge of how much you have to do overwhelm you. Take one thing on your list and do it without the pressure of the other things on it. 

Plus, it feels really good to be able to cross something off a to-do list. ;)