Simon’s Blog

Redrafting Your Novel – First Redraft

Redrafting Your Novel – First Redraft

Redrafting Your Novel – First Redraft

These are not hard and fast rules; such things rarely exist, and if they do, they would not be easily portable from person to person. Here are a few things I tend to do on the first redraft, either knowingly or subconsciously.

When do I start redrafting?

I start when I feel happy to. This could be anything from immediately, to several months later. Redrafting is a difficult process to muster enthusiasm for. After all, you’ve already written the story once, so rushing into it could do more harm than good.

So, the moment you feel happy to revisit the novel, revisit it.

How do I start redrafting?

Start to end, that’s pretty much how I do it. There are some novels that I’ve broken down into sections, and these I’ve been known to work at individually. You could argue that these are smaller novellas that I’ve brought together into a larger volume.

What do I start redrafting?

In this initial redraft, I’m looking at all the stuff that is no longer applicable. There’s usually a lot, a hell of a lot. At the beginning of a novel, my creative brain goes off in many directions, and a lot of these directions are lost along the way, or never become as important a part of the story as I first thought. This is where you change them. Ideally, your correcting the errors, without worrying too much on creating a lyrical masterpiece.

There are other parts of the story that aren’t errors, but are just no longer needed. If they are longer passages, I tend to cut and paste them into an ‘Offcuts’ document which I can refer back to if I need to.

I will also make note of any additional passages that I think are missing. Sometimes I write these as I go, and other times I just put a little note into the place that needs to be expanded.

In Summary

Redraft when you’re happy to. Don’t rush, but it’s probably not best to leave it for years, either. If it helps, write something else before tackling the redraft, to cleanse your writing pallet.

Posted by Simon in Blog, Simon's Blog
Kick-Ass is Not Tough (Homework)

Kick-Ass is Not Tough (Homework)

Kick-Ass is Not Tough (Homework)

Well, being a writer (or just having it as your hobby) is great fun. The last few days I’ve had the arduous task of reading graphic novels in order to come up with an in-universe short comic. This is for the Millarworld Challenge which is asking writers to come up with a short story (around 4 or 5 pages) within the Mark Millar universe.

The options are:

  • KICK-ASS story set between Trades 1-3 (5 pages)
  • KINGSMAN story starring Eggsy/Gary (5 pages)
  • HIT-GIRL solo adventure set during the Kick Ass trades (4 pages)
  • STARLIGHT starring Young Duke McQueen on Tantalus (5 pages)
  • AMERICAN JESUS set during first trade (5 pages)
  • CHRONONAUTS set in the past, during first trade (4 pages)

So, having bought the Kick-Ass trades at the weekend (how much??!!) and also the Kingsman book, I’ve been working my way through them.

I’m part way through Kick-Ass 3 at the moment, and whilst it’s as violent as I thought it was, I’m enjoying the series. I’m leaning towards doing a Hit-Girl story, so need to buy the Hit-Girl trade (they didn’t have it!) so I can be sure I have the character down right, and am not duplicating any ideas.

Really, there can’t be any easier things to have to study for a competition than comics!

I’d encourage you all to enter – such chances in the writing industry are few, more so in the comics one!

Good luck and Kick-Ass!

Posted by Simon in Blog, Comics, Simon's Blog
10 things you can’t help doing even after leaving your technology at home

10 things you can’t help doing even after leaving your technology at home

10 things you can’t help doing even after leaving your technology at home

We’ve all done it, got to work, or the train, or wherever, and realise you left the tech at home, sitting on the side, or next to the bed! So, why do we keep on doing stuff related to it? Take a look at our “10 things you can’t help doing even after leaving your technology at home”, and relate!

1. Wonder whether you’re near a WiFi hotspot


Are you still looking at random windows hoping to see a WiFi hotspot sticker? Ask yourself this; why? Because I’ve got some bad news, humans without technology don’t need WiFi.

2. Retrieve headphones to block out other people


There’s a reason headphones were invented… to block out the crazies… but without the technology, wearing them makes you one of the crazies…

3. Feel your pocket vibrate


There’s some sort of rapid evolution (radiation) going on, because with or without your phone, your leg picks up those messaging vibrations.

4. Subliminally search for power points everywhere you go


This is like a ninja art nowadays… the moment you walk into a room, you are aware of every single outlet on the wall… but now what can you use it for? That’s right. Nothing.

5. Keep plugging the charger in


Muscle memory at its most devilish! Why do you keep plugging the charger in? It won’t make the technology appear? Fool.

6. See something that would have made a great picture


Spot an insanely funny moment you just wish you could share with everyone? Oh, well. Chances are people won’t notice it in the sea of cat photos or George Takei updates!

7. Think of five people you really need to speak to


Normally you wouldn’t ring anyone, right? But now you can’t ring them, some weird piece of DNA programming is demanding you speak to them immediately. I’m afraid only close proximity can help you now.

8. Have an urge to listen to your audio book or read a Kindle book


Yeah, you just got to that point in the book and you were really looking forward to keeping going… and what’s that? Someone else is talking about it near you… quick, grab the headphones! Oh no! You can’t use them either! (see 2 above)

9. Plan out your next move in an on-line game


Got a great move you were desperate to put into play today? Oh, well, by tonight, someone will have plundered all your resources, and you’ll be back at square one!

10. Realise the world is truly a beautiful place


Yeah, the world is beautiful – with sunsets you can’t photograph, and incidents you can’t tweet about. Best you just appreciate them with your own eyes!

Posted by Simon in Blog, Simon's Blog