You know, the other moment I had a little bit of a realization; novel-writing was a lot like that one scene in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, where Harry, Ron, and Hermione are going through the layers of protections such as lethal plants, a deadly life-sized chess game, the winged-key room, and finally, the potions room in order to reach the Sorcerer’s stone.
(It is actually a very popular theme in fantasy, the thing about going through many obstacles before going reaching a goal.)
But nevertheless, I feel like writing a novel is a lot like that. Nanowrimo was the first gate, with the enormous suck dragons to conquer, where I created something out of nothing, even though it was horrible and out of the 52,000 words I wrote, I kept about 5,000 of them. I called it Draft 0. Then I went through two sets of rewrites, lovingly named Draft 0.5 and Draft 1, and by the end of the second rewrite, I had a solid “first draft” to edit. That was the second gate, with flaming carnivorous reptiles or something. I made it through that.
And now, I pause in front of the third gate, called Revisionland. According to authors, it can either be a desolate wasteland of purgatory or beautiful world of whimsical discovery.
I prefer the latter.
I researched “revision checklist” on Google. I came up with nearly a dozen lists. I chose one and dropped the rest. To be honest, I don’t even think I am going strictly by that one checklist.
I am wandering with my manuscript, my pen, and a very basic notebook.
I keep shying away from direction. I don’t know why. For some reason, though it’s revision, I cannot go towards an index plotting card for my life.
I don’t know why, but I’m just following my instincts. For this first actual *revision* round (I’m excited!) I will be focusing on plot, character, and worldbuilding, but I am going by my own intuitive agenda.
The day after tomorrow, I am flying to BEA, and after the conference, I am going to go to Baltimore and Philadelphia. I will be traveling the month of June, which means that either I will be busy, or that the traveling will set my creative juices free. Or both.
But the gates are opening now.