The physical process of rewriting


Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: The physical process of rewriting

  1. #1

    The physical process of rewriting

    I'm about to start my very first rewrite, and I'm a little unsure as to how to go about it. I don't mean what to look for or what areas to start with. I am not clear what is the best way to physically go about it. In other words, do I use a printed copy and write between the lines, do i work in a saved copy on my computer and just start deleting a writing over or ...what? I was wondering how you folks do it.

    thanks in advance for the help.
    wp

  2. #2
    Welcome to the community! First off, I'll warn you I am old-school, so take my advice for what it's worth.

    I create my manuscript in Standard Manuscript Format, this article talks a bit about that. The 1" spacing around the edges and double spaced type allow room for notations and proof-readers marks which I use when self editing. I will print out a copy of the MS and then do my first re-read making all sorts of notes and corrections by hand. After that I open the document in the computer, make all the changes, and then do my 2nd, 3rd, or however many passes I need in the computer. I'll save each rewrite as a different file just in case I change my mind about something.

    Hope that helps.
    “Fools” said I, “You do not know
    Silence like a cancer grows
    Hear my words that I might teach you
    Take my arms that I might reach you”
    But my words like silent raindrops fell
    And echoed in the wells of silence : Simon & Garfunkel


    Those who enjoy stirring the chamber-pot should be required to lick the spoon.

    Our job as writers is to make readers dream, to infiltrate their minds with our words and create a new reality; a reality not theirs, and not ours, but a new, unique combination of both.

    Visit Amazon and the Kindle Store to check out Reflections in a Black Mirror, and Chase

    Hidden Content






  3. #3
    If I'm doing a rewrite and I'm unsure of it, I'll copy the original to a new document, do all of my edits on the new copy, but keep the old one, just in case I don't like the edits, or I want to start over with the editing process. This way, I always have the original, until I'm willing to let it go.
    Her: (trying to be profound) If the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.
    Me: (Hungover and really not in the mood) The only tool I have is a screwdriver, so every problem looks like I can solve it by screwing.
    Her: ....

  4. #4
    The answer to this may depend on whether you anticipate having to do a full REWRITE (like, more-or-less retyping the entire story, but in a more satisfying structure/style), a heavy edit (with added/deleted scenes, etc.), or a light edit (just massaging individual words or phrases into more pleasing formats).

    I don't think I've ever done more than a light edit without an editor's notes, so I generally just go to the start of the file and read through (sometimes reading out loud to help slow me down and focus on the words, sometimes reading in a different size/font to make everything seem fresh) and make changes as I go.

    I've had editors request additional scenes, and I usually do that right in the manuscript, right on the computer, largely because editors send their feedback using either "notes" or "track changes" in Word, and I don't know how well those notes would survive if the MS was to be printed out.

    It took a bit of effort for me to get used to working almost exclusively on-screen, but now that I'm used to it, it's really useful. No need to mess around with making changes on paper, then translating the changes to the MS, having trouble finding the right parts b/c after the first change all the page numbering goes to hell, etc. I think if I were trying to write the next great literary masterpiece it might be worth it to print out a copy of the MS and work on a paper copy, but I'm just trying to tell stories, so I stick to the computer.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Warriorpoet View Post
    I'm about to start my very first rewrite, and I'm a little unsure as to how to go about it. I don't mean what to look for or what areas to start with. I am not clear what is the best way to physically go about it. In other words, do I use a printed copy and write between the lines, do i work in a saved copy on my computer and just start deleting a writing over or ...what? I was wondering how you folks do it.

    thanks in advance for the help.
    wp
    I'm not sure if this is a novel or something else...personally I don't make many notations.

    What I do instead is simply rewrite the second version on the same document as the first, beginning to end, with a half-page or so gap to clearly separate the old and the new (old below) so I can cut and paste and delete the old version as I go paragraph-by-paragraph.

    It's a lot simpler than it sounds but I find it efficient to effectively work in the same file and minimize the number of partially completed documents floating around. It's not like I need or want the first draft once I have done the second - though I imagine some people may want to hoard copies of each drafts for various reasons.
    "If you don't like my peaches, don't shake my tree."

    "Perhaps I write for no one. Perhaps for the same person children are writing for when they scrawl their names in the snow."

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Warriorpoet View Post
    I'm about to start my very first rewrite, and I'm a little unsure as to how to go about it. I don't mean what to look for or what areas to start with. I am not clear what is the best way to physically go about it. In other words, do I use a printed copy and write between the lines, do i work in a saved copy on my computer and just start deleting a writing over or ...what? I was wondering how you folks do it.

    thanks in advance for the help.
    wp
    I write notes on a printed copy

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
This website uses cookies
We use cookies to store session information to facilitate remembering your login information, to allow you to save website preferences, to personalise content and ads, to provide social media features and to analyse our traffic. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners.