Be Thankful for Delays!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Late last fall, I heard from two agents about a novel manuscript I'm trying to place. One loved it and the other had a lot to suggest. After much introspection, I decided that revision was in order. But since that time, life intervened. Family traumas and professional obligations, not to mention the holidays, jumped in to delay physical work on the project. I had spent countless hours mentally contemplating how to approach the revision and had settled on a new beginning, but I just hadn't had the time to do the work. The delay had been frustrating until yesterday when I opened a blog on revision that stopped me in my tracks.

The blog post was titled, Five Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Start Revising, an interview with Kendra Levin, an associate editor at Viking. Within the body of the post was a plot diagram. I've seen similar diagrams multiple times and am aware of the importance of the way your story builds, but this time, for some reason, it hit me smack dab in the face. My new attention-grabbing beginning just wasn't going to work. Starting with the definitive event that turns the character on his heels and begins his healing, is not the way to begin.

So, I'm grateful for delays. Had I been physically working on the revision over the last two months, I would have worked in vane. Now, when I open the computer and begin the process, I'll be on the right track.

I'm learning to appreciate delays.

Have you ever had a delay that changed your story for the better?

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Hi! I’m Sandra Warren, a writer with very eclectic writing tastes. I’ve been fortunate to have publications in multiple genres including children’s, gifted education, parenting, how to, poetry, journal, educational activity guides and biography as well as audio and video production. I'm a city gal recently transplanted to the mountains of NC where glorious mountain vistas inspire latest renderings.

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