Revisions Take Time

I have rediscovered something, while working on revisions for The Moonlight Mistress: available time to write does not directly translate into wordcount.

If I’m writing dialogue or description, but most especially dialogue, the words pile up faster. Word acquisition slows when I’m making subtle changes, or changes in many places throughout the manuscript.

I think there are a couple of reasons for revisions being slower. One is that I spend time scrolling or searching around in the document for the things I need to change. The other is that each change requires time to think, and if the changes aren’t related to one another, each one requires a little thinking time of its own.

If I’m just adding in a scene, I can start at the beginning and proceed to the end, or an end; also, I’ve usually thought about what I’m going to do in that scene before I sit down, so it’s just drafting, or if I’m really lucky, transcribing.

Why do I ponder these questions? Well, I feel better about my writing if I feel in control of it. It’s not something one can control in every aspect, but knowing how I work, and that my methods have been successful in the past, is reassuring. Understanding my process makes me feel more in control of my process. And if I feel more in control, I won’t panic and flail and be unable to finish what I’m working on.

Related Posts: Revision Metaphors. The Art of Waiting.
Pithy Writing Advice.

About Victoria Janssen

Victoria Janssen’s first erotic novel, The Duchess, Her Maid, The Groom and Their Lover (Harlequin Spice, December 2008), was translated into French and German. Her second Spice novel, The Moonlight Mistress (December 2009), was translated into Italian and nominated for a RT Reviews Reviewers’ Choice Award. Her third novel is The Duke & The Pirate Queen (December 2010). She has also published erotic short stories as Elspeth Potter. Her blog features professional writing and marketing tips, genre discussion, book reviews, and occasional author interviews.
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