Friday, April 6, 2012

Feeling struck by a tsunami of rewrites

In that crazy moment when you feel struck by a tsunami of rewrites (like when you get fifty pages of corrections from a beta-reader that means months of edits--I love you Jeff and Donna >,<)...
And you feel that you've been swept out to sea...

by your own Attention Deficit Disorder (ummm A.D.D. is bad for a writer...) OH SHINY OBJECT...I shall write two hundred pages about shinies and then my W.I.P. will only be 150,000 words and no one will mind that, right? Right?


for a moment I got taken over by Briane Pagel who writes 200,000 word blog posts...

Back to my Pixar-infused narrative... Ahem...

And you feel that you've been swept out to sea 
as if the whole world has turned against you.
And the most obvious solutions in your writing
escape you, and you look like an idiot...
Remember the words of Dory the fish
And keep in mind that if, while you're singing this,
someone you meet ever says to you these words:

"You are my Nemo". 

That you should stop typing and go with them.
Because these words mean that they would search
every inch of the world just to find you.
When you get back, all the crap your betas gave you
will still be sitting there in the pile of dung that used
to be your manuscript.  It's all good.
Sometimes when stuck, all it takes
is to make the best of a situation. Criticism gives you the
freedom to explore areas that you hadn't. Like maybe your story...
in case you wrote two-hundred pages about hockey games.
And when it's our writing, grab that shovel with both
hands, apply spit, and get to shoveling.
Writing is hard. George R.R. Martin said so. Hence,
it must be true. Have a great Friday.


  1. I love Dory - she's my second favourite Pixar character (jack-jack is the first, he's adorable).

    Fellow A-Z bloggy buddy
    Mithril Wisdom

  2. For me, this month's writing is shot to hell. With A to Z, reading CPs ms, a grandbaby that wont sleep, planting season, and MaJoR house re-modeling something had to give.


  3. Thanks for the morning smile and congrats on Slipstream!

    A to Z of Immortals, Myths & Legends

  4. Donnzie as a beta reader :) Is she treating you well? :) Do you pay her in Pepsi? :)

  5. First, I love the Pixar clips. As for rewrites, I don't mind them as long as I know where I'm going. If I don't, then...ack!

  6. a little 4-year old girl said that i was like dory...i took it as a compliment. i enjoyed this very Nemo-centric post! :D

  7. Excellent post! And good luck with all those edits. That's a lot of work. Your blog always seems to validate my own struggles as a writer. Thanks!

  8. I love Finding Nemo. My little guy refuses to watch it.

    I assume you got your rewrites done since your book is released, or is this a new one? Did I mention what an AMAZING cover you have? Seriously cool.

  9. I need a backhoe instead of a shovel.

  10. The little critters watched that movie last night. Good luck with those rewrites.

  11. I seriously love these posts.

    Good luck with your edits and rewrites. I hope yours go better than mine have. =)

  12. Writing is easy.

    Editing is hard.

    That's why I don't do it.

    (Twelve words.)

    (Not counting those last two.)

    (Twenty-one words.)

  13. I wish I could turn off my word count when I'm editing. I get unhealthily obsessed by how many words I'm cutting out of the MS.

  14. Good luck with your edits, Mike. Just buckle down and do it.

  15. Finding Nemo is my fave ever animated film! Now I've got the swimmin' song in my head!

  16. You're my Nemo - funny!
    Rewrites and editing are fun. Just keep telling yourself that.

  17. Just keep writing. Just keep writing...

  18. Writing is difficult, which is why nobody really wants to do it. In truth, everyone wants to HAVE WRITTEN, but the writing part is just too hard.

  19. Who would have thought you and Nemo could be so encouraging! Yeah, getting back my manuscript from editor/betas gets me down sometimes but often the products is so much better, I'm super excited afterwards.

  20. Good luck getting through your fit of rewriting. Have a great weekend!

  21. This comes at a perfect time.

    I had a meltdown a couple of days ago when feedback from my betas all said the same thing about one of my main characters.

    Fixing it won't be so easy, and will involve blowing the whole thing up into pieces and putting it back together again. With a deadline coming at the end of the month, I'm still freaking out.

    But at least I have a plan. Writing is hard work...

  22. Thank goodness for crit partners and beta readers! Love Nemo. We recite many of those lines at our house.
    Congrats on your upcoming release!

  23. Good luck with the rewrites. It may seem daunting, but if you take it one at a time, you'll get through it.

  24. See, that's why I just make sure I get it all correct the first time.

    (Forget anything you ever heard about me re-writing ch. 4 so many times. That -never- happened.)

  25. I agree. It is hard. I think Thomas Mann said so, too. Or was it Wolfe? One of those. I empathize. I hit my head on a wall with edits all last week. I'm waiting for a new batch today. Oh yay. Not.

  26. Yep, writing is hard. Mostly it's worth it.

  27. We have Pixar blaring on a daily basis here and Nemo and Dory are regulars.

    Hang in there Michael and have a good weekend.

  28. Oh man... It's such a process, yes? Usually after I get edits, I'm excited, then I'm depressed, then I'm grateful. It's sooooo daunting... But one little word at a time... You rock, Michael. :D

  29. Funny enough, I'm doing movie reviews for the A-Z challenge, and my letter F review was for Finding Nemo:

  30. So true! I often use the phrase... "Just keep writing. Just keep writing." Dori offered some brilliant advice there, only hers about swimming. BTW: I love that movie lots.

    Thanks for this blog post. Some critical revisions are upon me and I'm terrified. But alas, I will conquer them because I will "Just keep revising."

  31. I just love "You are my Nemo." I think it may now be my favorite pick up line ever, if such things exist.

  32. Beta comments are kind of like pulling off a bandaid. Sometimes it hurts for a mintute, but then you get much better very quickly.

  33. Mike, you're such an entertainer. Yeah, the time does come when you have to get shovelling to get rid of the garbage and unearth the good stuff.