Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Revising Magic

I love revision. Really. I do.

This time around I'm revising in a bit of a deadline crunch, but it's still wonderful.

Here's the thing: Drafting a novel is fun, but scary. In order to make myself do it, I have to set a minimum daily word count--I can't eat lunch until I have a thousand words, and if I can keep going after lunch, so much the better. If I didn't set rules, I'd stop the minute it got difficult, which would be one minute after I stopped reading yesterday's words and began thinking up today's.

Revising, on the other hand, offers the fun of drafting with almost none of the terror. You know where the story's going, because you've been there, and now it's time to get in there and fix all the details you wanted to fix all along but didn't because you wanted to get the drafting OVER WITH FOR GOD'S SAKE. You can play with character and dialogue and descriptions and make jokes and giggle and generally have a great time.

So, a week and a half in (and a week and a half to go), I've augmented a character, clarified a relationship, begun to establish clearer motives, and actually made headway on the Logic of Magic. Now I'm ready to start at page one and mush my way through, tinkering. It'll be a hoot and a half, and I can hardly wait for tomorrow morning.

IN OTHER NEWS: Shhh. *whispers* My desktop computer's dying. Anybody have a recommendation for a new one? I'm not a gamer, but I hate sluggishness. Probably shouldn't be a Mac, since my laptop's a Dell. What do we all think about Windows 7? Is it true it sometimes swears at Microsoft Word, and loads photographs at random? I won't be doing serious research until I finish my revision, which may mean I finish it on the laptop. Good thing I have a back-up, or I'd be sweating bullets right now. As it is, I'm backing up every which way and several times over.

Which reminds me. Time to email myself today's revision. Losing a day's revising to the ether would make everything a lot less fun, wouldn't it?


Marissa Doyle said...

I just got a new Dell laptop for Christmas with XP loaded on it...I'm a happy camper so least I was once Scott messed with the color values because Word was *waaaaay* too white, and my nearly defunct Thinkpad had been a nice gentle faded white because the screen was on its last elbows.

Unknown said...

Reinvention is a big hobby of mine. I think it's necessary if you're the creative type. Trends change so fast. I've written for a newspapers, written poetry, fiction, essay. Now I blog and prepare taxes, for lack of a paying writing job.

Anonymous said...

What a coincidence. My 9yo iMac G3 died just about when your unit did. Wish I could have offered advice, but I needed it myself. Just got my first laptop, an Asus, and am happy with it.

Ellen, I'm happy to hear you making so much writing progress. I've been in a group for a year, but have taken a short hiatus to clear my palate, or should I say palette?

I'm adding your blog to my bookmarks, where I had it before. It's good to read you and to write you. Best to you and Rob.
Stephany B