While catching up on podcasts over at the excellent Social Media Examiner, I stumbled across one in particular that discussed a couple of things that have been important in my own writing processes, recently: storytelling, and revision.
While the importance of revision gets hammered home at every level, one aspect of it often goes unappreciated. The benefits of revision are obvious, of course, as it only takes one story, advertisement, email, or essay to realize that errors happen in first drafts. New or better ideas come along, and make your writing stronger. It’s a fact of every writer’s life.
What a lot of writers don’t realize, though, is that revision not only allows you to touch up here and there, but it also functions as a safety net, and, perhaps most importantly, serves to encourage writing in the first place.
It’s easy to view revision as a scary thing, a difficult slog that cuts down the euphoria of completing a draft or (especially) a manuscript. It can be tough, there’s no doubt. However, it also serves as a remedy for what is likely the biggest problem writers the world over face: writer’s block.
Revision serves a purpose! Don’t be afraid to write something crappy; don’t be afraid to throw any and all ideas onto the page. Knowing that you can come back later and fix things can help remove the trepidation that comes with a first draft and all too often leads to a block.
Embrace revision; hurdle over that block with the knowledge that if you hate your text, you can always fix it. And who knows—maybe you’ll even love it.