June 13, 2014 Christi

The Creative Process: Station Four

revision village
Welcome to Station Four in the Creative Process!

Revision Village is where you revise, edit, and polish your work. You’ve got to be ready to bustle about in town, make connections, and to make decisions.

Just today, in Wildfire Writing Master Class, ten writers looked at drafts and considered options for revision and editing. Questions arose such as:

  • Do I need more about this character? Here, where I’ve just touched on her past, should I delve more deeply?
  • What happened in this paragraph, where my readers/listeners got confused? How can I create a transition that helps them understand where I’ve taken them?
  • How can I make the most of this beautiful sound at the end of the line in my poem? I see that I’ve added extra syllables and interrupted the lyricism. What can I rearrange so that I land on my favorite word?

Week after week, these writers are visiting their work and making decisions. They’ve created in full-on creativity mode, without gumming up the process with all these kinds of questions. They’ve followed their thinking to put together whole drafted chapters. They’ve taken a bit of space and created distance through pausing. And now, they’re objective and listening and weighing and encouraged and moving forward, and fine with whatever the work needs.

It’s a busy time . . . it’s an engaging process . . . and feedback and support are invaluable.

You need the critic, as long as he minds his manners and uses his polite, in-town voice. In the same way, you may gather a team of positive but discerning writers and readers. Through these efforts, you’ll try on different things in order to learn what is the effect of your work on the reader.

Feel free to pick up new ideas, too, if you happen to do a little shopping while you’re in town. You should make the most of your stay, after all.

Thing is, Revision Village can be a place you stay for quite a long time, and though you may feel ready to move on, every minute here is worth it.

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