Book Trailer For Madam President

Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Art of Rewriting

You don't learn to write until you learn how to rewrite. This is true. My first novels I did not rewrite mostly because I didn't know how. But of course that is what you learn over years and it can not be taught. You have to find out how to do it on your own because it is the million and one things that have to be addressed and yes people can critique your work but you really have to find your own tuning fork.

It really comes down to connotation and denotation. And connotation is the one that guides all rewrites. How much work is each word doing. And this is something writers know or they don't. You know the writers who have not gotten a handle on this because they are the ones that flood you with words that do nothing. And again it is nuance or instinct and you either instinctually know a sentence is not right or you don't.

The big debate in writing classes is of course can writing be taught. Not really. You can lead someone to the water but they really have to have the ability to swim. And that is something in rewriting that can not be cheated. Because the book does not come from a first draft but a careful re-imaging of each scene and then the whole movement of the book has to be evaluated at the same time.

Again these are the hard to define skills  the writer must find on their own.  That is why it is an art.

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Books by William Hazelgrove