Monday, June 21, 2010

Constantcompulsiverevising-itis

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!

So I wasn't able to stay exactly on track as I planned. I took far too many breaks--notice anything different on the site ;)--and got caught up reading dozens of blogs (I think I should also be blaming you people for having such interesting and entertaining reading material for me, but alas, that's like blaming the chocolate for finding its way into your mouth - you put it there, didn't you? Le sigh... I have no willpower).

Apart from my little rant though, I've come full circle. Back in the early stages of my blog, I made a referral to something I called constantcompulsiverevising-itis. You can read the post here, if you so desire.

THIS, my friends, is the problem. I like to revise way too quickly and way too often. I write a little, re-read it, and unless it's flowing exactly the way I think it should, I revise and edit right away, and then decide I don't like it, and suddenly I've taken 6 steps backwards.

So my new plan is going to be not to re-read my work until after it's written. Maybe then it will flow properly, because hopefully there will be words on the paper to entice said...er... flowyness. (Yup, today is all about making up words ;) )

Alrighty, now it's your turn. When do you revise your work? After it is complete or while working on it?

17 comments:

Melissa said...

I do the same thing. I write for a while go back in re-read it. Edit it. Re-read it. Hate it. Then I delete all of it in a fit of frustration.

My strategy is very counter productive and why I still haven't finished my MS.

I'm with you on the needing to write the ENTIRE manuscript and THEN edit. Oh sigh.

I can try if you will!

Mesmerix said...

I have serious issues with Compulsiverevising-itis. It's something I'm still working on stopping myself from doing until the end of the first draft. I mean, serious issues. So, you're not alone. It's a common problem actually.

There are some computer apps and programs said to help with this. I'll be doing a post on my blog about them this week!

Jayne said...

Oh yes, this condition sounds very (sadly!) familiar. I think how I got through it was to just keep pushing through - you'll get there. :)

Aubrie said...

I have the same problem you do! Everyday I go over the previous day's work and revise i before going on. And then, sometimes for no reason I'll go back and revise again!

JustineDell said...

Oh, after it's done!! But it has drawbacks too. You end up spending a lot more time on the edits (depending on how much you screwed up).

If I did while I wrote, I would never finish a book. I just like to write, write, write, until it done! Then do all the "hard" work. LoL.

~JD

Mohamed Mughal said...

I find myself revising in all ends of the spectrum: while writing, many sections later, even after I think it's done...you (or at least I) can't "plan" creativity...it comes when it comes.

Amanda Sablan said...

I'll admit, I fall victim to revising while writing too. And then, weeks after I thought I was done with a scene, I find something that needs to be revised again! Ugh, it never ends!

WritingNut said...

Melissa - Oh no! Don't delete! Save it even if you don't use it - you never know when you might want it again. And YES, I promise to try too :)

Mesmerix - Really?? I can't wait!

Jayne - Thank you so much for the encouragement :)

Aubrie - Sigh, the story of my life!

Justine - I think it's a good plan - at least that way you actually have something to work with!

Mohamed - I'm slowly learning that too. Although I have a general idea of where I'm going with a story, I've found that you can't rush it.

Amanda - Tell me about it! It's a vicious cycle.

Erinn said...

I don't revise until I have completely finished writing a draft. Then I go back and revise. I normally go between 3- 7 months between drafts, this way I'm seeing it with fresh eyes.

It also takes FOREVER! I've been working on one novel for three years now and I hope I'll be ready to query in the winter. See a LONG time.

WritingNut said...

Erinn - Thank you for stopping by! I think it's a great idea to take a break in between. And don't worry about how long it's taking - you'll get there! :)

Jemi Fraser said...

I revise both ways - as I go and afterwards. I can't go forward unless the other stuff is okay. It doesn't have to be perfect, but it has to be going in the right direction!

WritingNut said...

Jemi - I'm so glad that it's working for you. I don't know why I can't force myself to have the same discipline.

Lydia Kang said...

I can't stop revising either! It drives me nuts because I can't get anything (new) done!

WritingNut said...

Lydia - I know what you mean - but I'm going to beat it! (I hope)

Lynn Mitchell said...

I have serious revisionitis as well. It is compulsive. Drives me nuts.

I'm glad it isn't just me. :)

WritingNut said...

Lynn - Don't worry. You're definitely not alone :)

Amy said...

I definitely don't read my work until it's finished. Otherwise I would never finish. There are always so many bits to rewrite and edit that I would never get anywhere.