Thanks to my concussion, when I sat down to start this latest round of revisions on my MG Fantasy, it’d been almost a year since I’d last looked at it. I was worried I’d become so attached to my memory of the story that I wouldn’t want to change a word.
But I was wrong.
Getting some distance helped me see the problems in the manuscript more clearly. And, rather than absence making my heart grow fonder of those mistakes, it let me see most of them with a detached and impartial eye. I won’t lie, it still hurt to cut some things – but I was able to delete them (even if I required consolation via chocolate afterwards).
I’m almost done my first pass on this round of revisions, and I think fresh eyes are called for. So, I’m going to put it aside for a week or so before I print it back out (I know, I know, I’m an eco-terrorist, but my concussed head still can’t handle too much computer time. If it makes you feel better, I’ll be printing on the back of my last version) and read it through.
I know a week isn’t as long as a year (duh!), but I’m hoping even a little time off will create enough distance to see the flaws in my revised manuscript. And I still plan on letting the even fresher eyes of my crit group have a look, too. With any luck, all our fresh eyes will result in a fresh, shiny new manuscript to send out.
What about you? Ever put a story aside for a while and come back with fresh insights? Tell me about it in the comments.