Revision toolbox

After typing THE END in giant block letters on my no-holds-barred first draft, how do I polish it into a ready-for-other-people-to-read version? As many writers will tell you, writing is revision. Once I’ve let a manuscript rest for at least 6 weeks (or 6 months or even 2 years!), I read it through again fast.…Continue reading Revision toolbox

Solo retreat, 2020 style

In the middle of July, I took a 3-day solo writing retreat. I love the Mississippi state park cabins because they’re cheap, air-conditioned, and secluded. I’m more interested in glamping than roughing it, especially when I’m tackling a difficult revision, and this was perfect. After wiping all surfaces with disinfectant and rewashing the dishes and…Continue reading Solo retreat, 2020 style

Residency review: Elsewhere Studios

In July, my family and I were honored to participate in the inaugural Parent Residency month at Elsewhere Studios. An interdisciplinary residency, Elsewhere is tucked in the tiny Colorado town of Paonia, overflowing with artistic inspiration and support. I was at a point in my writing where I needed to step outside of my work–and…Continue reading Residency review: Elsewhere Studios

Revising a revision strategy, part 2: Characters

This week, I’m interrogating my characters.   I finished examining my novel’s scenes last week. It was both dispiriting and energizing to find SO MANY areas for opportunity, but the exercise allowed me to sort where my novel as a whole is strong and where it needs more work–and how exactly I might improve it.…Continue reading Revising a revision strategy, part 2: Characters

Revising a revision strategy, part 1: Scenes

I’m finally diving into revisions of the book I finished in May with a whole new revision strategy. That is, with a strategy at all. Usually I just start reworking everything all at once, from structure to punctuation, becoming pretty overwhelmed by my big mess. Well, early drafts are always a mess, but I’m feeling more in…Continue reading Revising a revision strategy, part 1: Scenes