The Brain Drain – Writing vs Revision

In the month of November, I have made only four (now five) blog entries.  Two of these were short (barely the length of a Tweet), one was random musings while lying sick on the couch, and the last linking a video someone else made.

In that same time period, I also edited and revised 181 pages of the novel.

One could say, ‘Hey, you’re just a lot busier at the moment’ and I wouldn’t blame them.  One would also be wrong.  With the exception of that first marathon weekend, my writing schedule remains the same.  If anything, it’s slowed down a bit.  It comes down to the difference between Writing and Revision.

For me, Writing is Hard.  It is also infinitely more rewarding.  When I write, I’m still figuring out the story.  The world, the characters, and the plot are all new to me.  Every single page is a new discovery so I’m constantly getting that spark of excitement.  On occasion, I get one of those brilliant flashes and I do a little dance that amuses Steph to no end.

In Writing, the Moose always want to see what comes next and  keeps pushing me forward.

from InkyGirl

Over on the Revision side, well, it’s not so much fun.  I already know what’s going to happen.  The story has been told and the characters established.  At this point, it’s just filling in the plot holes and making a tweak here or there to the characters.  It’s moving this sentence over to this paragraph.  Sometimes it’s the painful decisions like cutting out a page I spent three hours laboring over or entire chapters (three of those have gone away thus far).

In Revision, the Moose is bored out of his skull and wandering out on the highway to see if he can take out a Volvo.

I’d guess that a lot of other writers feel the same way.  No one I’ve ever spoken to has said “Woohoo!  Revision!” unless it’s heavily dosed in sarcasm and/or alcohol.   The only joy I get out of revision is knowing that the story is told and it’s that much closer to going out on the market.

The Moose has found a way to compensate for the boredom.  He’s been filling up my brain with details and ideas for the next novel.  But I can’t start that until this Revision is finished and the story is sent out to readers.  It’s torturous, but it keeps me going.

And I guess it beats squishing Volvo’s.