If you follow me on Twitter (@DorindaBalchin) you will have seen my recent re-tweet linking to Paul Dorset’s article “Letting the book ‘cook’”
Paul advocates finishing a book and then putting it aside for at least a month whilst doing something else. As Paul says:
So why do you want to let the book cook? There are a couple of very good reasons. Firstly, it’s easier to see the story better from an editing point of view when you approach it fresh. A break of at least a month will give you that perspective. By the time you come to read it again you won’t remember everything and it’ll be like reading it for the first time. You’ll quickly spot those places where the pace isn’t quite right or the characters are inconsistent, or something needs to be changed around. Trust me. And that brings us onto the second reason. When you read the book a second time it will probably actually feel pretty good. What I mean is that time helps the book get better! Well of course it doesn’t but it does feel that way. You wrote the book in the heat of the moment and just put pen to paper. Your emotions were raw. If you go back and tweak it immediately you’ll probably change small pieces here and small pieces there, and you may even ruin the effect you were trying to achieve. Coming back to the book after a break will allow you to read it as it was intended to be read, with full-on effects. Sure, you’ll find some spelling and grammatical mistakes, but you’ll probably be surprised at how close the rest of it was to what you were trying to do. Trust your instincts! If you know how to write, you probably wrote a pretty good first draft.
I have always been a believer in letting my work ‘simmer’ a while on the back-burner and coming to it again with a fresh eye. My new book. ‘The Guardians’, has just finished ‘cooking’ and now I’m moving into the next stage – the final edit.
After that there is the cover and formatting, but I hope it won’t be long now before the finished article is available for you to read!
UPDATE: ‘The Guardians’ has been published and is now available on Amazon