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Wednesday, June 10, 2009

SRS Wednesday Whip Tip #2: Brent Hartinger

I am honored to welcome award-winning author Brent Hartinger for today's WEDNESDAY WHIP TIP. Brent is known for his incisive dialogue and daring topics in his many YA novels, including GEOGRAPHY CLUB, PROJECT SWEET LIFE, GRAND & HUMBLE, THE LAST CHANCE TEXACO, two sequels to GEOGRAPHY CLUB, and his fantasy novel, DREAMQUEST. Brent also co-founded Authors for Intellectual Freedom (AS-IF!), an anti-censorship group. Visit Brent at his website, blog, fantasy site, and twitter.

And what are Brent's best revision tips, you ask?

I have two revision "tricks" that seem to help me. The first is to finish the first draft and set it aside. Don't peek! Don't even look at it again until at least a month later (preferrably longer!). The longer you wait, the less wed you'll be to exactly what you've written (which is essential for good revising), and the fresher your eyes will be.

Secondly, if you get stuck while revising, if it's clear some plot-point isn't working but you don't know how to fix it, turn to your subsconscious. Think intensely about the plot or character problem right before you go to bed. If your subconscious mind is your friend, it will work on the problem all night, and the next morning, the "right" answer will magically surface into your conscious brain. I can't tell you how often this has worked for me!

Thanks, Brent! Smackdowners, don't forget to check out CuppaJolie today for her Whip Tip from Darcy Pattison, and come back tomorrow for Lash Flash!


  1. Great tips from a great author! Thanks for these.
    Shelley S.

  2. Yay! I like these tips and reading this whole series. It's fun.

  3. Brent, do you promise it will be there in the morning? :) Great tips! I definitely agree it's best to put a first draft away for a while.