Writing Recommendation #8- Outline Your Draft
Recently, I started revising my latest manuscript. Yes, I did take Matt Bird's advice and set aside the draft for a few weeks… about a month. Good advice. It definitely helps you look at the writing with a fresh perspective. Today I'm musing on some advice offered by mystery writer Hallie Ephron in her book Writing and Selling Your Mystery Novel.
I know. I know. I don't write mystery, but much of her advice applies to every genre. She visited my writing group a few years back, and that's when I bought her book. Both in the lecture and in her craft book, Ms. Ephron advises outlining your rough draft as a first step in revising. This is, of course, because the rough draft/manuscript will almost always deviate from any planning documents (unless the writer is exceptionally anal about noting every deviation from the plan; that is so not me). Outlining the draft scene by scene is discussed in great detail in Chapter 23 of her book. I'm trying it out right now. So far, I think it's a great technique!
Oh, and if you're wondering, Ms. Ephron suggests setting aside your draft for a few weeks before starting to revise just like Matt Bird.