Rewrites are Wrenching

Rewriting is funny. Kind of like time-travel is funny. Kind of like back when we all had  VCRs (I still have one) you could hit record, and tape a new thing over something you’ve already recorded. That’s the feeling I have right now: I hit record on a new scene and I’m watching it play out, and as it plays out, it’s erasing some things that already occupied that time slot in my narrative. I think the new scene is better, which is why I’m letting it run, but the old stuff wasn’t bad, you know? I’m sad to see it go. The nuts and bolts of the old scene still pretty much get sandwiched in with the new stuff around it, but now everything about the old scene means something else and must be handled differently in light of a whole thing that just upset the emotional equilibrium of the two main characters.

Just so you know, this new scene doesn’t change the direction of the whole plot or anything—it’s just the problem of the week, and I’m working through it. Also, I’m going to share this illustration with you. It’s one of the best ones I’ve done so far; a lot of people said so. Technically it still works and I’m really hoping I can still use it, but due to this re-recording of events its inclusion in the actual book is in jeopardy. This is why you should consider writing your book before you illustrate it.

© Grace Makley, 2012


8 thoughts on “Rewrites are Wrenching

  1. I feel like drawing that ceiling would have driven me bonkers, but then again, that’s why you’re the Art major and I’m not. xD Glad that your edits are moving along–making the tough changes is your job, right? Also, on a slightly unrelated note, I like the header with the new font–did you draw that yourself? Love it!

    • I *did* go bonkers. The current state I am in is a direct result of that ceiling.

      You noticed the banner! I’m glad you like it. Yeah, the font is handwritten. I’m working up to an even cooler (I hope) change in the website appearance sometime these next few weeks.

  2. Don’t look at it as rewriting and don’t look at it as getting rid of the old and putting in the new. It may have already been written and it may have been good but since you are “re-writing” it then it must not have been right. Look at it as if what you had written previously was simply a placeholder until you came up with the right scene. If you are happy with the “re-write” in the end then you didn’t really change anything, you just made it the way it was supposed to be.

    Good luck!

    Also, your artwork is amazing! I am positively jealous. I have an idea for a children’s story and I cannot help but to imagine it as a comic book of sorts. If only I had a fraction of your talent. Then again, who says I can’t learn, right?

    • That’s usually how I feel about the process, but in this instance the old stuff revealed a character quirk that now there just isn’t room for, but there’s more conflict in the new stuff so it’s better. Maybe I can allude to that bit of characterization elsewhere.

      And thanks! You can totally learn, if you’re willing to work really, really hard. I’m proud of my skills, but the above is just about the best I can do, after five years of art school. I’ve pretty much accepted at this point that I’ll never be John Howe. 🙂

      • Pfft! Whatever! I just had brunch with Howe not too long ago. He was talking about your work. I saw the jealous gleam in his eyes. : )

        Keep it up! I love your art. It has a surreal, folk quality to it.

        (No, I don’t actually know Howe. I had to look him up and make sure you weren’t referencing someone dead in order for that joke to work. Heh heh)

        • Your Howe joke really made me laugh when I first read it, though somehow I didn’t get around to replying until now. :-p Thanks for your kind words about my art, it is very encouraging.

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