Now, the rewrite really begins…

There are a number of problems with rewrites, even fairly minor ones, and the main one is that there is little scope for the creative process.  That was reserved for the original manuscript when the author is screenplay writer, director and actors combined.  Retaining the freshness of the original is, of course, essential but that is easier said than done.  Deciding how to play each scene, how to start it, how to progress the story and provide the hook, all these things are essentially creative because you start with nothing.  Not just that, but each scene has to be spare with no non-essential words and nothing off-plot.  Writing a blog is easy; it takes a few minutes to jot down 500 words but a 500 word scene can take a day.

Now, I started the rewrite yesterday.  Up to page 3 was easy but now I have to add a new scene which introduces the hero and his girlfriend; this is all new.  My original MS started with the intention that the hero would be task-orientated but about halfway through the book, I realised that he was coming out a bit characterless, like a Dan Brown hero.  So I added the girlfriend so that the hero had some kind of life outside saving the world, and then integrated her into the story.  The trouble was that she first appeared too late in the narrative, hence the need for the new scene, which will also need to be seeded here and there in the remainder of the bo0k. 

Unfortunately, I’m one of those people who cannot write to order.  I  have to have the driving need to get the words down on screen before I can write and, before that, I need to be able to envisage the scene completely.  Once I set off, I work fast but there’s more time spent thinking about it than doing it.  I mentally set the known beginning and desired end, then sleep on it, and think about it when I’m doing other things.  Suddenly, I know how it will be and that’s when the need to get it down on paper overrides the need to feed the cat, sit in the sun on a sultry Sunday afternoon and I think that moment is now.  Damn.  It’s a lovely day as well…


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