Read it Again
I just completed the second read through of my WIP. The first time I read through it was on our trip to Japan. I printed it out in book form so it was easy enough to carry it wherever I pleased.The most interesting places I did editing was at a shrine on the former Imperial grounds in Kyoto, on the train ride to see Mount Fuji, and on the airplane over the Pacific Ocean. I read about the first 100 pages before we returned (jet lag does not help editing, I tell you). Between now and May, it took me to complete the first and now the second reading with more thoughts of rewrite and not just word changes in mind.
This second time around, I tore it apart. There are black marks with tons of notes, crossed out scenes or paragraphs or just words, scarring the pages of this copy. It is actually a good feeling since I know that once I sit down and begin the changes in the file, that I have some idea of what I am doing and am learning more about writing. I am not taking myself too seriously and I realize that I can do better than this. That I will learn from it.
The doubts that run through my mind comes from not taking enough time to do the right job or if there is a way that I can have the story work so it is publishable. I rewrote this whole book, and I believe if I continue to not take myself too seriously, I can do something to really make it shiny.
My next step is to sit down and think about the big ideas and what I can do with them. Should I keep it, expand it, or just let it go (maybe use it somewhere else someday)? I am thinking about the reader now and how I improve the pace of the story, clear up the inconsistencies, and to not let my characters down.
Most all, I need it shiny enough to convince myself it is worth reading all over again (and I know I will).