Sunday, October 15, 2006

Revising DOOG

I've been working on DOOG, on and off, for the past couple years. The original story was based upon a childhood experience in my hometown of Des Moines, Iowa, circa 1970.

After receiving feedback, I changed story into one with with personified animals. And I changed the setting from midwestern to an exotic location on the other side of the world. The story was better; still, there were wrinkles.

Finally, my story was ready to show. I mailed it to agents and editors and received a wide range of feedback. Once again, I changed the story based upon feedback. Then, I changed it again.

This story has undergone an amazing evolution. Problem is, the original premise is long gone, as well as the enthusiam initially generated.

I love revision. For me, it's the most enjoyable aspect of the writing process. But revision for the sake of revision doesn't necessarily guarantee a better manuscript, particularly if you lose sight of your goals. So, I guess, I need to re-evaluate my goals for this story in order to get it back on the right track.

In other news: I finished reading HUGGING THE ROCK. I read this book in 4 days, almost a record for me. I'm a very slow, dyslexic reader. Normally, it takes me a month, at the very least, to finish a novel — even a fairly easy-to-read verse novel like ROCK. If I'm not careful, I'll read several pages of a book without retaining anything, my mind tends to wander. But I found myself completely absorbed in the story and buzzed right through it. The story tore at my emotions, recalling my relationship with my eldest daughter. She sent me an email yesterday, basically letting me know that I am her rock. Highly recommended!


Susan Taylor Brown said...

Thanks, Don. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed Hugging the Rock. I was anxious to get your input knowing a bit about you and your daughter (from reading your blog). I'm not a bit surprised that she considers you her rock.

Now if I could figure out how to turn more dads and daughters on to the book.

rindawriter said...

Don, don't fret now over your manuscript. Everyone feels that way at one time or another about what they write. Let it set for a few days and then go back and see if there isn't something there you love deeply. Pull that part out and start again with that part. You can always, always put the other parts back in later! They won't be lost or wasted. That's what's so nice about writing!