Revision School of Pain

Step One: What the hell did you write, anyways?

The key before ANY revision is to make a scene tracker. This document will help you to figure out the quintessential question every writer must answer after completing a draft of her manuscript: What the hell did I just write? The scene tracker will take you some time to fill out, but DO NOT SKIMP or CUT CORNERS. This document will serve as your reference guide to your draft in its current state, and from filling it out, you will be able to see your book in a different, hopefully more objective light. Feel free to add extra columns to target things specific to your manuscript. These are my basic go-to columns, but depending on the draft, I customize the columns to contain the information I need to examine and gather for that particular draft. Yes, that’s right—I often fill out one of these beauties for each draft/revision I undertake. They help, I promise, and are worth the time investment. You can make your own based on what you see here in excel or word or even by hand, or you can click on this link to my public google drive file and save it to your own.


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