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I am a wife, daughter, mother, bilingual teacher, poet, author, women's Bible study teacher, world traveler, orphan advocate, and an adoptive mother.  Our adoption journey has been filled with a lot of hurt and loss, along with even more hope, grace, and healing.  Through it we have experienced more of God than we ever bargained for and have watched Him miraculously redeem our story when we surrendered all the broken pieces to Him.


Surviving the Valley Series

Surviving the Valley Series
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Friday, July 25, 2014

The Great RE-Write

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This quote has so much truth to it. People always told me I had great writing skills. I believed them. Writing is one of my greatest passions and truly my "element", so I believed what others told me about my writing. I even wrote a book and published it! People still complimented me on my writing ability, and I believed them even more. 

Then I joined a writer's group. 

In our group, we all learn a little bit each time we meet.  A grammar rule (or a change in grammar rules since the 90's when I learned all the rules). A better way to incorporate more voice. Appropriate paragraph size. A way to vary sentence structure. How to cut out passive voice in order to use more active verbs. How to condense. What to cut out. Proper editing techniques. 

I don't learn a whole lot in one sitting. I don't always take something to be critiqued.  I don't even have much to offer as far as critiquing someone else's work. But I listen carefully each time, and then I apply what I learn in that one sitting to my current writing.  I hope it's improving.  I'm learning to say so much more with a lot less words.  

I guess I didn't realize just how much I've learned about writing until the big test came.  Pulling out my past work with the intent to revise and rewrite where necessary. I pulled out chapter one of my book and easily cut out nearly a thousand words.  Unnecessary words. Repetitive words. Once I gave chapter one a complete revision, I kept going. Every chapter needed work. Lots of work. I knew I needed to cut out the passive voice in order to condense my writing, I just didn't know how much.  Wow.  

The story didn't change in any way, shape, or form. The writing improved drastically.  A much cleaner "work of art". I plan to republish it with the second book as a set, as suggested by my friend in writer's group who said she'd work with me to publish them in a few months. 

In addition to having a piece of work that I am much prouder of, it also helped me to relive that first period of connection with Juan David, helping me to deepen the connection we're working on now.  I had so many questions about what went on in his head during that "tragic" time when we didn't come through for him, and now I have him here to ask him.  What a blessing.

So, though I had intentions of keeping this blog much more up to date this summer, my "re-writing" project sort-of captivated me for the last month.  My apologies. 

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