My week has taken on a good, anti-Trump* rhythm – basically, it's two days helping watch my grandson Calder, one day writing this blog, and four days working on the new draft of WHEN I GOT OUT.
Writing is hard, but I think rewriting is harder. When writing a first draft, one is free to explore. By the time you're ready to revise that draft, you have a definite concept formed that you now have to adhere to. As you see the target more clearly, you have to improve your aim.
I set up my existing draft on the left side of my screen and put my "NEW ADDS FOR WHEN I GOT OUT" file on the right side, with thesaurus.com in the middle, and I start going through the whole thing. I add my new ideas (x-ing them out when they've been incorporated), I cut, I move chunks. I got some very good ideas on the first draft from my agent, my brother, and the TG. I know what I have to do. The worse things get in Washington, the angrier I get, the better I have to write.
This week I had/have computer problems and lost power for half-a-day to the Santa Ana winds, but I'm finding a second wind in this second draft. I've been cheerleading myself – to get this overdue draft "finished" and sent to my publisher The Story Plant.
This is what I've been telling myself:
"Grasp the subject, the words will follow." – Cato the Elder (234-149 BC)
"Revision is one of the exquisite pleasures of writing." – Bernard Malamud
"The beautiful part of writing is that you don't have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon." -- Robert Cormier