Writing is hard work. New to the field of writing, I never anticipated the amount of time taken up by revisions.
When I first started my manuscript, I wrote it as a non-fiction book in about 3-4 months. After attending my first writer’s conference, the 21st Century Non-Fiction Writers Conference, I realized my story was not ready to send out to literary agents. It needed more work.
“Put down everything that comes into your head and then you’re a writer. But an author is one who can judge his own stuff’s worth, without pity, and destroy most of it.” — Colette, Casual Chance, 1964
In fact, it needed a complete remodel in order to transform it into a historical fiction piece. This process took about two months of writing and another month of revisions and edits.
Initially, when I interviewed my agent I knew I wanted to work with her because of her editorial style of approaching her clients’ work. You see all agents aren’t willing to help you enhance your manuscript before its sent to the publishers. I actually had a few agents tell me that my story was very interesting but because my dialogue needed some work they weren’t going to offer representation.
I was so happy to know that my editorial agent was willing to help me perfect the manuscript giving it a stronger chance of getting purchased by a publisher. Right now I am in the revision process and with each rewrite it becomes so much better.
“By the time I am nearing the end of a story, the first part will have been reread and altered and corrected at least one hundred and fifty times. I am suspicious of both facility and speed. Good writing is essentially rewriting. I am positive of this.” — Roald Dahl
I agree with Roald Dahl and have seen firsthand how good writing has come from my rewriting. So if you have to revise for the 100th time---do it with the confidence of knowing your story will be all the better!
Ayanna is a debut author that enjoys writing fiction, historical fiction, non-fiction, and poetry for children. She finished her first manuscript in 2015 and is currently working with a literary agent to represent her work to Publishing houses.