May 23rd, 2006

Evolution of the Rewrite

So I finished another rewrite today. Overall, it was one of my more ruthless passes, as I shaved my novelette down from 16,800 words to 14,400. I'm happy with the improvements . . .but definitely not satisfied. This monster can still benefit from being shorter. One scene needs to be rewritten and two others need revisions. I also need to smooth out an awkward transition between two scenes. The good news is that this monster is much closer to where it needs to be, closer than it's ever been before. This was the fourth full rewrite I've done on this piece, so I've put a lot of work into it. But I believe in this story very strongly, so I don't mind all the time I've put into it.

But when I take the time to think about what this piece was vs. what it has become, the contrast is like night and day. In basic structure, the first two scenes are the same, and the third one is the same in parts. After that it is quite literally a very different story, a better one, I think. It's amazing how much crap I had to write for this piece before it finally started coming together into something that resembles an actual story.

But a story it is becoming, and that pleases me to no end. It does need another pass, and I'll certainly subject it to some critiques before sending it off, but I feel as though my trouble spots are no longer character, plot, or theme, but rather the pacing, a transition, and some prose that needs tightening (at least from what I can tell). And if I've finally reached the point where these are the biggest concerns, then maybe, just MAYBE, this story is nearing completion.

Most excellent.