God I'm tired of talking about Silksinger. I feel like this is my blog for the past year: "Blab blab blab Silksinger blab blab. Blab? Blab Silksinger blab blab blab."
And yet, here I am for more blabbing, though I think it will be short, because I am tired, not only tired of hearing myself talk about Silksinger, but tired of being awake.
Spent the whole day today revising one chapter. Wrote a new scene to do a better job of introducing the villain -- giving him "an entrance." This was at the request of my editor. I'm all for a strong entrance, and he's right. My villain had one, but it was fairly late in the book, when the main character finally lays eyes on him. But early on, when the reader first *meets* him, it wasn't very dramatic. So that's what I've been working on. It oughtn't have taken all day, but it did. I think it's because my mind is just weary. I had hoped, after that month of not leaving the house while I worked feverishly on draft 2, that I wouldn't have to create any wholly new scenes for draft 3. But here I am, doing just that. Yesterday I did another one. And I'm tired.
I like revisions. I do. At first, sitting down with a cleanly printed manuscript with the job of taking something that has been written already and making it better, well, it's so exciting. But towards the end of the process, it can begin to feel a little like. . . Purgatory. I mean, I can honestly envision this as Purgatory -- Purgatory is a kind of library (but I think the shelves would all be filled with boring books, or maybe accounting ledgers, or something sucky like that), and you have to sit in a study carrel for all eternity endlessly rewriting the same book. Wouldn't that be awful? I've never read The Divine Comedy -- was there anything about revisions in Dante's Purgatory?
(That notion just reminded me of something silly my first illustration teacher in art school said on the first day of class. I don't recall the context, just that he had us imagine that we got to live an entire second lifetime, but we had to spend it watching a video of our first lifetime! Would you do that? If, at the end of your long life, a bureaucratic angel were to come to you with a clipboard and give you the choice to a) die, or b) spend the next 82 years watching an endless video of the life you just lived. . . what would you choose? My first thought was no, I don't want to spend 82** years watching a video, but then, it would be cool to see your whole life all over again, all the forgotten stuff, the good and the bad. It would get boring too, especially days like today, where I'd have to watch me spend eleventy hours writing three pages, with much sighing and slouching and petting of the dog.)
(P.S. to last paragraph -- that was the same day I met Jim.)
Anyway, my tired mind is hijacking this supposedly short post with rambles about the afterlife. What I meant to say was just a little bit about the mechanics of tackling this draft. When I got the manuscript back from my editor, I laid it open and went through it page by page, reading along, taking the sort of *easy* suggestions that can be changed on the page and don't require a ton of rethinking. I tried to cut unnecessary words and passages, too, and more importantly: I made notes on index cards of the *not-easy* changes that still needed to be made -- rewriting scenes, clarifying important things, etcetera. Those index cards above are only some of them. Those don't include the ones I've already done and crossed off. Yeesh, man. It is nice shifting the *accomplished* ones into the other stack.
Anyway, that's how that's going. Good, but tiring. Mind feels like honey left too long in the crock.
Sleep. Wake up. Revise. Repeat.
**82 years chosen at random. I plan to live longer than that. Like Sapphire, I plan to live 150 years and learn to fly before I get to the end.