mjj (flemmings) wrote,

I begin to wonder, as I mine through this fic, and watch the original vision vanish (damn) and/or turn into something else (hmm) and go back to alter that line there so that fourteen pages later this line here makes some kind of sense, at people who just write and post, write and post. Don't they ever feel the need to rewrite? Don't they even edit? Is everything perfect the first time for them?

I've written 'perfect the first time' stuff, generally by accident, and my feelings are usually Is that all there is? Yup. There it is, says what I want to say, done. Uhh- damn, sort of. I'm no fan of the fic that drags on and on, chipping in a granite quarry, until you're sick of it. (One gets sick of that kind of story in the first paragraph.) Neither am I given to major rewrites, and my hat is off to writers who do it as a matter of course. Rewrites seem dangerous. IM limited E of them they take the hard edge of inspiration from a work and turn it into something smooth and bland. Goes down easier, suits an audience, doesn't satisfy creator me at all.

I see why pro authors rewrite: their stuff has to please someone other than themselves and is /work/ in a way that fanwriting isn't. (Fanwriting is a hobby. No really, it is.) I assume fan authors who do complete rewrites have hopes, however vague, of being pro some day; or rewrite because they find it stimulating to do so ('I shoot to edit', Kurosawa said; maybe these guys write for the same reason.) Or else they're the 'life is real! life is earnest!' 19th century puritan that one finds from time to time chastising people for not trying to be the best they can be, who rewrite because it's too easy if they don't and easy is Bad and Wrong and Morally Debilitating. (Really, she muses, North America would be a much happier place if it was the French who'd conquered it all.)

However, since I'm in it for the fun, what I want is a *little* process from my writing. Medium size oil painting, not a grand canvas you need ladders for, nor yet a sketch or watercolour that has to be right the first time. A biggish canvas and the ability to touch up areas here and there so they look better, but still writing on a straight track with the finished picture there in my mind.

Meanwhile, a character's major plot function just disappeared because, well, in spite of my best efforts Gouen /will/ behave like a youngest child. I like him, I really do, but I find myself a little nonplussed when a character I'd intended to be a mere Device insists on acting like himself. Galley slaves my left hind foot, Mr. Nabokov.
Tags: dragons, writing

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