April’s editing had the kind of shape to it that many of my projects do. I started strong, did nothing in the middle, then had a little spurt to get finished before the final deadline.
This month’s goals weren’t too ambitious. I wanted to get things all set up so that I could start the actual rewrites in May. I juggled my notes, made some plans and considered some options but most importantly, I created the word document entitled NEWPlan. It’s one of the most enlightening things I’ve ever done in my writing ‘career’.
I started with the scene by scene plan for the new version. For each scene, I created a page on the word document, headed with the one or two sentence description of that scene.
Then, opening up the latest version of the old draft, I cut and pasted each section into the right place in the word document. It’s a bit like a jigsaw where you find all the red pieces and put them vaguely in the bottom right hand corner of the board because you know they go there somewhere, even though you don’t yet know how they fit together.
The consequence is strangely pleasing. Although all of it will need hard-core editing (it’s now in the right order scenes-wise, but completely the wrong order for all the little details), it’s nice to have 80k of rough draft in the new document and only a few scenes which are still blank.
Next on the list is three months of solid rewriting, starting with a little stand-alone subplot which forms a sort of skeleton on which the rest of the story hangs.