Revise, Persevere, or Trash it?

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I started writing my first novel, several years ago. Since then, I’ve revised, cut, changed the timeline, and rethought some of the characters in my current work in progress (WIP).

Am I going about the process the right way? Perhaps and perhaps not, opinions differ.

Janice Hardy at Fiction University (a favorite of mine) has a thought-provoking post on this today, “OnwardNo? Write to the End or Go Back and Edit.” The reasons, she suggests, writers get into the revision and edit mode  include:

  • The first chapter isn’t where the story starts.
  • The story just isn’t working.
  • You’ve decided the story you’re writing, isn’t the real story.
  • The character you thought was the protagonist isn’t.
  • Or, you’ve studied the craft, learned a few techniques, and want to fix your mistakes.

As part panster and part planner, I’ve experienced all of the above. I do study the craft; I read and sometimes make revisions and edits. I hope my novel will be better for it.

At any rate and well past 30,000 words,  I’m too far to stop now. I plan to see this first draft to fruition.

Want more information on writing a novel, check out these resources:

Janice Hardy’s, Planning Your Novel: Ideas and Structure

Larry Brooks, Story Engineering @

C.S. Larkin’s, The 12 Key Pillars of Novel Construction: Your Blueprint for Building a Strong Story

or James Scott Bell’s, Super Structure: The Key to Unleashing the Power of Story


7 thoughts on “Revise, Persevere, or Trash it?

  1. Pingback: Why not turn that novel into a short story? | jean's writing

  2. Good for you for not giving up. I worked off an on novel for a couple of years before was finally ready to publish. I think impatience is a novelist’s worst enemy.


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