The Sweat and Tears in Writing

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by Jordan Jolley

If you devote time for the quality of your story, then your book’s potential can go far.

There are two very common questions people ask me: “How long did it take you to write your first book?” and “Are you done with your second book?”

It took me about three months to write the rough draft for Rise of the Dragon. That was when I was fifteen years old. So what time did I spend between writing at fifteen and getting the book published by age seventeen? The two-word answer is: revision and editing.

It seems that most people overlook the revision process to a book. They usually see an author as simply a writer, nothing else. But in fact, much (if not most) of the work in the book is revision. For me, the revision and editing of my story takes much longer than the initial writing itself. This step in book development is also the most difficult one to make before completion. This is because after you write your rough draft, you begin to notice the faults in your writing.

Realizing your weaknesses can be devastating. But there is one thing that should be remembered: you have all the time in the world. Nobody knows your faults but you at this point. It may take a while to fix plot holes, character flaws, etc; but the time and devotion is all worth it in the end. After working within the story, you still have to worry about grammar mistakes. You can have editors fix those and you could fix them yourself.

Once your book is published and out in the world, there may still be regrets you have to your book. It’s not the end of the world if you have these regrets. Now you may still have mistakes even after publication (see Printing is Not Perfect). You may still have errors, whether if you had an editor or not. Just remember to look beyond your mistakes and learn from them. If you know your weaknesses, you can focus on them next time and turn them to strengths later on. It’s simply the process of learning and experience.

If you ever plan on writing a story, just realize that the main writing portion is not the end. You still have a long way to go. Remember to take your time and don’t let the revelation of your faults discourage you. If you devote time for the quality of your story, then your book’s potential can go far.

 

 

 

Since he was a student in Elementary School, Jordan Jolley has devoted much of his time to writing. Though still young, he continues to prepare himself for a long yet adventurous journey in writing. He currently lives in Dayton, Idaho where he is creating the next chapter of The Tales of Dracoseries.

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21 thoughts on “The Sweat and Tears in Writing”

  1. It takes me twice as long to revise and edit, too. Although I have a good knowledge of grammar, punctuation, and syntax, I find a “content editor” the most helpful for me. When I write the first draft, I spew from the heart. I usually cut 20% from the book during rewrites.

    Thanks for the helpful post, Jordan. Pinned & shared.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The revising and editing takes me a long time. There are always several rewrites. I had outside help with the current book I am writing which has been a big help. Thank you for sharing this article. It was very informative.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I find revision easier with a notebook, going through listing the chapters with the things I don’t like in each. I’m even looking at events in later chapters and thinking “put a hint to this event happening in chapter 4” etc

    Liked by 1 person

  4. After my 1st draft is complete, I revise in layers: first I’ll go through the book in its entirely, line-by-line, looking for proper tense and word placement; then I’ll go through it focusing only on story continuity; the next run-through is devoted specifically to dialogue; then I walk away for a week, and go through it all, once again, in as narrow a span of time as possible. I’ve found that having a good sense of what is on every page as the story progresses is helpful, or in every scene, as it were. Refining a manuscript is a lot like working a puzzle; it all has to fit, and fit well.

    Liked by 1 person

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