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Question
Hi,

I am never quite satisfied with my work.
I read somewhere that it is best to keep re-writing until you are completely satisfied.
This has never occurred to me to do this, I naively thought that good stories just happen (do many writers re-write?)the consequence of this is that I get frustrated because I feel my work is not good enough.
My question is this: How do you go about it? do you just write the whole thing again or read through the bits that don't make sense and try writing it many ways until you have reached satisfaction?

This probably sounds quite obvious to most people but not to me

Thank you for your time

Mark Clayton


Answer
Hello Mark,

I re-write many times, sometimes as often as ten re-workings. I go through the first rough draft to look for major problems. I cut and paste. I add and delete.  I look for inconsistencies.  Second and third times I begin to see sentence structure, paragraph structure and chapter content.  Fourth time I try to spot overused words or expressions. By now I am polishing prose and balancing sentences so that there is a rhythm to the work.  Fifth time is looking for puncutation corrections.

From there on out I read aloud. By doing that I pick up many more errors.  I see places that need expanding and others that are too wordy.

The best little book for re-writing is called "Getting The Words Right" and you can get it from Amazon.com.

It is never possible to get the work to your complete satisfaction. At some point you have to let it go and hope for the best.  Sometimes a book that is worked over too much begins to be stale. It loses something in the re-working. You have to decide when enough is enough.  And even then the publisher's proof reader will find more errors. That's just the way it goes.

Happy writing,
Dorothy

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Dorothy K Morris

Expertise

I can answer questions about writing fiction, creating characters and re-writing. I cannot answer homework questions.

Experience

I am a published author of nine novels in The Mockingbird Hill Series.

Organizations
National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, NSDAR

Publications
NOVELS in the MOCKINGBIRD HILL SERIES: SECRET SINS OF THE MOTHERS, COYOTES OF CREEK CROSSING, THE EIGHTH EVIL, THE TIME IN BETWEEN, DIRTY RICE, TALLY'S NOOK, FROM THE FAR PLACES, NATURE OF THE BEAST, (THE RANKS OF THE INSANE (to come out summer 2016))

Education/Credentials
Studied writing at at American University in DC

Awards and Honors
Who's Who of American Women, Who's Who in The World, Who's Who in America.

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