Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Write or Rewrite?

What do you find easier: writing or rewriting?  For me it's the rewriting.  I like nothing more than tearing into the previous day's work, pulling it apart and making improvements.  It's a forensic process and extremely cathartic.  Every time I sit down to write I find that my impulse is to rewrite first and then move onto something fresh.

This may be counter-productive.  It may explain my slow progress.  I think though that I will end up with a very tight third draft.

I also find that when I'm writing something fresh I get some good forward momentum, but I'm never happy when I read over the material the following day.  So out comes the red editing pen and I reshape and revise until I feel confident with what is on the page.

I'd love to hear your views on this.  What comes most naturally to you:  writing or rewriting?  What tips do you have to share?


  1. It's the writing for me I'm afraid. When I'm writing I can give myself the freedom to go wherever I want to - even if it is rubbish. When I'm re-writing though, I have to force some structure onto my ramblings.

    But, if you're talking satisfaction - well the biggest satisfaction comes from the re-writing. It's a bit like cleaning or gardening - hate to do it but love the result. (Mostly).


  2. I like the gardening / cleaning anaology, Linda - once you start it becomes an obsession. Or is tha just me?

  3. ...and it doesn't matter if what you write is rubbish first time. No one is going to make you submit that for scrutiny. It's for your eyes only, and it will only get better with each rewrite!