Book Trailer The Noble Train

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The thousand and one things of rewriting

There has to be a thousand and one things you do in rewriting and more. Thank God you don't have to do them twice. But it is all those changes that comprise the final draft that hopefully will not come back to you again. And it is the tweeks that change the work. The big work is mostly done but then comes all the nuances that make a novel a novel. The minor changes of one word for another or the addition of a paragraph setting the stage or just the breaking down of dialogue and exposition all change the novel in ways that are immeasurable.

It is really at the end that the glaring moments taunt you. After rewriting something ten times or more you think you have caught the big inconsistencies or mistakes but of course they are the ones that are embedded in the text and your eye has become used to them. When they do make themselves known it is amazing because you have read that passage so many times and never have seen it.

Then you start back through swapping out words deleting sentences, breaking up chapters, combining chapters, fleshing out characters. It is amazing how some scenes stay so thin, so under imagined. So you go back at it and basically rewrite those scenes from the beginning to the end. And then of course you have to read it again to get out all the fat again. Fat is a big one. A paragraph bunches up and literally doesn't look right. Crowded. It looks crowded.

So you thin you fatten. The book is an accordion you expand and contract expand and contract. This goes on for months. This goes on for years. And finally you reach a point where you have completed the thousand and one things and you think that is it. No more. I am finished. Until you discover the one thousand and second.
Rocket Man...the American Dream gone bad

Books by William Hazelgrove