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Friday, June 6, 2008

Revision Quotes

"Writing is rewriting.  A writer must learn to deepen characters, trim writing, intensify scenes. To fall in love with the first draft to the point where one cannot change it is to greatly enhance the prospects of never publishing."
-Richard North Patterson

"What I had to face, the very bitter lesson that everyone who wants to write has got to learn, was that a thing may in itself be the finest piece of writing one has ever done, and yet have absolutely no place in the manuscript one hopes to publish."
-Thomas Wolfe


beckylevine said...

Oh, boy, does that Thomas Wolfe one strike a chord. The things that are coming out of this revision are bits I would have sworn were absolutely critical to the story. And a LOT of my favorites.

The cool thing is, when you hit the right note for a revision and can get excited about where its going, somehow the cuts don't hurt quite as much, because there's a new vision that they truly just aren't part of.

Still...never easy.

Sara said...

Thanks. Needed these!! :)

Sarah Rettger said...

I'm with Becky. That's a good bit to remember. (Well, they both are, really!)

beth said...

These are lovely! I'm posting a link from my blog to these!!

PJ Hoover said...

LOL about falling in love with the first draft. I fall in love with the fact I've written a first draft, but never the thing itself!
Thanks for the post!

Jules at 7-Imp said...

Ouch (but so true) to what Wolfe wrote. As depressing as it sounds, maybe that genius piece of writing that doesn't make it into a book will be published posthumously or some such thing. There's always that!

The Cole Mine said...

Too true...