Unchartered waters


{photo: Paul Evans}

In order to discover new lands, one must be willing to lose sight of the shore for a very long time. ~ Andre Gide

Revising the beast of a novel I call “NaNo2008 experiment” has me weaving and bobbing on the sea of doubt.

I found a great article on the 7 steps of revising a novel, along with some helpful tips from my writer friend in Ireland. I implement them as best I can. Must.Try.Harder. I handwrite in a notebook, then merge with my chapter on screen. I print a hard copy, slash through rambling paragraphs, add dialogue, then revise dialogue to fit character’s voice. Then revise again to steer the story in the right direction.

I let the beast sleep. For an hour. A day. I journal about my progress. I wake up thinking about my characters. I run scenes through my head while I shower. I do this for all my writing, though.

What I’m doing differently this time is posting pages for critique on #yalitchat.com. What I like about the virtual discussions of my work is that it is all about the writing. There’s no body language to read like with my local writers group. There is no personal stuff to get in the way. No one has to “soften” their comments because they know my kid was up all night with the flu. E-feedback is about the writing and it is real. And I’m learning a lot so far.

What breakthroughs have you made in your writing by traveling through unchartered waters?


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Filed under Advice, NaNoWriMo, Novels

2 responses to “Unchartered waters

  1. Richard

    Hi As a wordsmith you should know that “unchartered waters” is an erroneous phrase. If there is no chart or map or plan for the route ahead then you are going into uncharted waters.
    Regards Richard

  2. point taken. thank you, Richard 🙂

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