Friday, June 29, 2012

Relive, Not Rewrite

Ava Jae over at Writability recently wrote a fabulous post about "reliving" instead of "rewriting" your stories. (Go check it out here!) Basically, instead of having a scene on hand for reference, you can let your creative mind flow without that reference and become a better writer. Your characters will thank you for it.

Relive the scene. That's something I've been striving for since I started my so-called "rewrite" this month. But when I have both the old version and new version open at the same time, it stifles the flow that may have otherwise come through.

I think that's why I had trouble with a certain scene recently. I was so stuck on a transition that made sense in the other draft but didn't make sense for this one. I had changed some things. Moved the order around. Let the conversation flow more naturally. And this transition... it was forced. I could tell it was forced, but because I had the other draft open, I couldn't see how to fix it.

Luckily I have an amazing husband who knew just what it needed.

When it was fixed, thanks to his genius, I let him take a look at the final product. He's always very honest with me, tells me what I need to fix... but as he went over the last six pages, he didn't say a word. I was worried.

"So?" I asked. "What did you think?"

"Actually... I'm impressed. It's really good."

And that was it. My brain didn't want to believe it. But that's what happens when you "relive" a scene instead of "rewrite" it.

Thanks, Ava Jae, for your inspiring post. :D Now back to writing.



  1. I'm wondering if doing something like that would be good for some of the earlier scenes in my story. I never rewrite. I always just look at the original and see if there's something I can change. Sections might end up getting rewritten, but yeah, when you're looking right at the original, I can see how it would get in the way...

    1. What I've been doing lately is, reading the original, then thinking about it and going with what feels natural, rather than saying, "They have to talk about this here, etc." and it's worked out a lot better so far.

  2. Psh. You give me too much credit. But you really did good with that scene. I felt myself being drawn into it, like I might get drawn into a "real" published novel. And that's the idea, right? So good job!

  3. And you know how picky I am with books! :D

    1. What, you mean you READ?! Hee hee. Ratein te! <3

  4. I'm definitely going to have to check that post out, because I've been hitting the same problems! I try to re-write and keep all the things I liked from the last version, but it stifles my creativity and everything ends up sounding forced.

    And thank you so much for the comment on my blog :) That helped me decide what to do with Timin!