Monday, August 4, 2014

Tackling a Major Revision

Happy Monday!

In December 2013, I started what would become my biggest revision project yet. And while it was most definitely hard work, I ended up with a book that I am so very proud of. I'm no expert, but I do have a few tips on how to tackle a major revision.

Be open to change.

This is the number one step. If you’re not ready to change anything...well, you’re not ready to revise. Finishing a draft is awesome! But revision is where the magic happens. If you don’t think you need to change anything in your first draft, I suggest letting your manuscript sit for at least a week or so. When you come back with fresh eyes, you may be surprised at the things you find.

Know what needs to be done.

When I get notes from my CPs/agent/editor, the first thing I do is make a list of each issue that needs addressing. This way, I can check them off as I go.

Make an attack plan.

This is where outlining comes in handy. It doesn’t have to be some long, drawn-out, 10-page outline. Simply jotting down main plot points can be super helpful. The point here is that you need to know where you're going.

Have a support system. And chocolate.

Because there may be tears. And that's okay. This writing stuff gets tough.

Embrace the "mental health days."

We’re not robots. We have brains and bodies that need rest. Burnout is a real thing that sucks. I, for one, love my mental health days. If you need a night of Netflix and brownies, go for it. Your MS will wait for you.

Believe that you can do this.

Again, it's tough. And the first round of revisions may not be "it." You may need two rounds. Three. Seven. But once you're holding a manuscript that's everything you'd hoped it would be, all the work is so, so worth it.


  1. These are awesome tips. I especially love the list making and chocolate eating. ;)

  2. LOVE these tips! I will embrace the mental health days. I will. :)