I’ve written about my book-mapping process before. Now that I’m finally done mapping all 78 scenes for my book, I can gird up my loins for the hard work of revision.
The most important thing to me is what the book is about — not the action, but the theme. Is the book I wrote different from the one I thought I was writing? And if not, what do I need to do to fix it? Once I have a firm grip on what the book wants to be about, my entire revision can be anchored by that concept.
But revision is about a whole lot more, of course. Here are some of the things I’ll be thinking about as I revise:
- Identify scenes that can be cut or need to be rewritten.
- Draft any scenes that need to be added.
- Cut or combine unnecessary characters. Round out characters who seem flat.
- Check consistency of character voices in dialogue.
- Balance the emotional and action plots.
- Make sure the chronology of events makes sense.
- Consistency of world physics, i.e., magic and powers.
A lot of this is Big Picture stuff. In addition to that, there’s the detail work: grammar, sentence and paragraph structure, rhythm, image, diction, etc.
What do you think about as you start revision? Let me know in the comments.