Rewrite Or Not To Rewrite

Posted by on Jul 14, 2010 in Uncategorized |

Well it’s been a day and I still haven’t decided. Can you believe it? The idea of rewriting the novel is still bouncing around in my head. There are a lot of things to take into consideration to make this decision.

First, there is the question of whether it’s worth the work. It’ll be a few months to rewrite the entire novel, maybe more. Then after the first draft is complete, the editing begins, and in my single-book-writing experience, editing is what takes the most time. The problem isn’t the time I’d have to spend to accomplish this, but the result. Would the novel be a better novel if I rewrote it?

Second, are the questions that come after deciding to rewrite it. What am I going to rewrite? If I choose to do a rewrite then I’m going to need to do an outline, something that was missing the first time around. If you’ve read any of the earlier posts you know the outline I did for SHIFT (Book 2 in the series) was the first I ever wrote, and although I haven’t really started that book yet, I’m not sure if it’s going to be effective, but my guess is that it will help. If I am going to do a rewrite of the novel, then I need to make sure I am doing it for the right reasons. I want the novel to better, possibly have a better hook, stronger characters, better tension, etc. etc. etc. I want the book to be better. Do I have enough idea’s and changes I want to make to accomplish this? That is a question nobody can answer. All that can be determined is whether or not I think it will, and if were being honest here, I’m not yet convinced.

Third, if I rewrite this book and assume that it will be better, will it be marketable. I think I’ve created a solid story for a Young Adult market in the fantasy/paranormal genre, however, the genre is extremely overworked and from what research has told me, agents that accept all of the above are seeing the majority of their query submissions fitting this genre. That means, that putting all the difficulties of getting published aside, I have a huge market I’m competing in. If I make these changes, are they going to make me stand out better than the next writer? Again, a question nobody can answer but is up to me to decide, and I could decide to go one way or the other, and still be completely and utterly wrong.

The last thought I have on the matter is this: Can I bear to rewrite this novel now? I spent the better part of 14 months working on this book, editing it, having beta readers critique it, and editing it some more. I’ve had some great responses from my readers, and very little negative critique. As far as I can tell they like the book as is, but that’s not the question. The question is if the agent’s and publishers like it the way it is. After 14 months of work do I really want to start from scratch with the same book or do I want to go on to something else completely.

This book is done, it’s already being queried and if it doesn’t get picked up, maybe it’s time to move in a different direction with a brand new idea. I can come back to this book any time to review it and/or rewrite it. I have the outline for book two done already. If I choose to start a new project and come back to this one later, I’ll hopefully be ahead of the game.

 After all I’ve learned throughout the process of writing this book, I know that no matter which direction I choose to go, the finished product will be stronger than anything I’ve ever written. Whether it be starting a new project or rewriting this project, when it’s all said and done it will be the best thing I’ve ever written. With each blog I write, my writing gets just a bit better. I’m aware of what I’m writing. I’m trying to be a better writer with each word I choose and I hope to continue get better with each word I have yet to write.

I’m still not sure what I’m going to do. But for any writers or non-writers out there that wonder what I could be thinking, there you have it. That’s my mind in a nutshell right now and if it seems like a cluttered mess, believe me, it is.

Congratulations, you’ve just spent 2 minutes in the mind of a want-to-be writer who is doubting his first project. Wasn’t it fascinating?