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Sunday, June 07, 2009

SRS Whip-Snapper: Molly Blaisdell

Crazily enough, Jolie and I keep having to come up with MORE categories (and more clever-bordering-on-wacky titles) for the awesome revision stuff that keeps pouring in.

Case in point: a recent blog post from writing colleague (and scary-brilliant person) Molly Blaisdell. Here's a taste of it, but then you have to go check out the post for yourself at her blog:

If only writing would flow forward like a smooth river to the sea. For me, writing is a lock system on a canal. Think Panama, Suez, or my local favorite, the "Lake Washington Ship Canal." To move the boat forward you have to wait for water to fill compartments. It's a battle to a high place from a low place. You start at the sea of ideas and back track to the source, the eternal spring of highly original work.

The first draft is that sea of ideas. The canal back to your original work has certain steps. Here are some steps that I've learned to trust on my writing journey to my well-spring.

1. A rough draft must rest for at least one month before you start digging into it.
2. Read your novel from cover to cover and mark the major problems. Understand that you are going to journey by here again and again. Don't worry if you can't fix everything on your first pass. Open your soul to the current changes.
3. Try some chapters in a different person. Is there anything cool or interesting about that? Consider flipping the book if you are intrigued by what is happening.
4. Ask your book to speak to you. This may seem strange, but sometimes your book will speak to and it might have something very useful to say...
(read the rest here!)

Great stuff, Molly!

1 comment:

  1. Excellent and apropos. Good stuff Molly, who is a very funny and cool person too. Funnier than I am at least, for what that's worth.

    "If only writing would flow forward like a smooth river to the sea. For me writing is a lock system on a canal."

    That is so good. And in some locks you have to pay to go up or down too.

    Thanks Holly too for bringing these great muses and suggestions for us to check out.