Got picture book drafts piled up collecting dust? Have critiques for your story, but haven’t done a darn thing to improve it? Maybe haven’t even read the critiques? Need a jump start to revise? ReviMo is for you! –Meg Miller
ReviMo sounds goofy. And maybe it is. But it’s wonderfully goofy. Writers from all over the world are diving into manuscripts and slicing and dicing and adding and embellishing. All at the same time. And they’re talking and blogging about it. The ReviMo community is hard at work. Goofy sounding? Perhaps. Helpful? Definitely.
Think about it. You’ve written something, and you’re pretty proud of it. You send it to your critique group. They are kind, but point out what needs to change in order for your piece to really work. Critique buddies are essential if you are serious about writing. And so is revision. A lot of revision. It’s an ongoing process. Revising just once is like changing your clay snake into an ash tray when you really could turn it into a work of art. It takes time, it takes effort, but it’s worth it.
There’s always that manuscript that, in your mind, hits it out of the park. But then reality sets in, and it turns out it’s a foul ball. Notice I didn’t say an out. It’s a foul ball, and you get another chance. You just have to check your stance, get mentally prepared for what’s to come, and go at it again. In writer’s terms, that’s revision. (Full disclosure: I raised two sports obsessed boys and am still married to their sports obsessed father, so I use sports metaphors ad nauseam. I need to work on that).
Revision means digging in and shaking things up. As Stephen King says, sometimes we need to “kill our darlings.” ReviMo is great motivation. We have cheerleaders, and we have accountability. So as I slash and smash some of my manuscripts, I cringe, but I do it.
Thanks Meg for allowing me to hang with you during ReviMo. Thanks for keeping me accountable, encouraging me to revise daily, and for providing cheerleaders.
Dear readers, even if you are not writers, we all need to tweak something. I’d love to hear your thoughts on it.