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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Inside my Revision Toolbox



The 10 Most Important Tools For Revising

1.     What is the story that I am telling?
2.     How will my character change?
·      Does my character get to where s/he needs to be?
No – How do I make her change?
~  Introduce a crisis situation that makes my character  change.
Yes – Do the things that happen along the way help get my character where s/he needs to be?

3.     What does it mean to move forward?
·      Reveal something about the character.
·      Propel the plot.
·      Build a relationship that is important later in the book.

4.     Summarize the things that don’t move the story forward.
·      An example of this is Charlie Brown, Linus, and Lucy speaking, but the adults always sound like, “Blah, blah, blah.”
·      One sentence summary of the scene.

5.     Is my main plot a character development arc?
·      Subplots
~  Do they fit in?
~  When do they resolve?
~  How do they resolve?

6.     Characters
·      What are my character's quirks and personality traits?
·      Do my secondary/minor characters grow with each appearance they make in the book? 

7.     Dialogue
·      Do my characters have unique voices?
·      Do they reveal everything about their characters?
An example of this is sub vs grinder (sandwich) 
Their socio-economic placement
·      Does the dialogue let their relationships evolve?
·      How authentic do they sound?

8.     Setting and Description
·      Picture it then brushstroke the description. Let the reader envision it, unless it must be specific.
·      For it to be specific, it must be important later in the book. If not, take it out.

9.     Wordsmith
·      Search for commonly used, but unnecessary words.
~  Examples are just, so, next, that, but.

10.  Show, don’t tell.



1 comment:

  1. Great revision list, Joyce! And for my current wip I did do characters charts for all my characters (they weren't super in depth) but I did them. Not the fun part.

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