At Least Five Versions

I’ve recently read several author biographies where they knock off a manuscript in a few weeks, and get that published. I do envy that speed. I also read about authors that donate their manuscripts to museums and I can’t help compare that to myself – my manuscripts don’t bear much resemblance to the finished book.

I can’t help but wonder if I’m the only one that rewrites and rewrites and reimagines and reshapes my book over and over again. The first manuscript is like the very barest bones, and then I not only have to put on muscles and flesh, but rearrange the bones when I realise I’ve got them all in the wrong place. Then do that all over again, and then again.

As for doing it in six weeks – not a chance. I need at least three weeks thinking time between first and second draft! I can’t help but wonder if I’m an abnormally slow writer, or if I’m unique in needing so many rewrites and polishes.

Still, it’s the only way that works for me. However, if I ever do donate manuscripts to a museum, each one will come in bundles of five versions.


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