What, No Phase Three?

Sorry for the interruption last week. At times it’s necessary to concentrate on the job that pays your bills. Unfortunately at this time it’s not my writing. I won’t dwell on that  for long because nobody likes to listen to others whine. So let’s get to it.

Today I start Phase Four in my journey of revisions.At which point you might be asking yourself, “Wait a second.
What happened to Phase Three?”

Well I’m glad you asked. During my very short hiatus here, I was able to refocus what little time had left into my revision process. After completing Phase Two, I jumped straight into the next Phase.

In Phase Three I rearranged my note cards into a sequence that best suited the story. In my particular case (in this novel anyway), I didn’t need to switch anything around. I did however discover a few gaping holes. I inserted place holder cards or those spots. And in one instance, I found I had given a character’s back story twice! Bad form on my part, I know. Now I need to decide in which scene it was better to give and ixnay the other.

All in all, that was a pretty short phase. It might have taken longer if I actually had to swap chapters around. At that point I would have taken the time to rearrange the manuscript chapters as well and then go through a re-read. As it is now, I’m considering melding Phase Three into a larger Phase Two.

Now on to Phase Four!

In this phase I’m taking notes on each chapter.

“What!?!” You’re exclaiming. “Still no writing?”

Not quite yet. Here I’m going through it once again to get all my thoughts down. Now that I’ve gone through it twice, I know where certain elements need to be peppered in earlier, or which scenes need steroids or Slim Fast. I also have a bit of extra help here. About a third of the novel I’ve submitted to a critique group and the remainder to a select few Alpha readers. I’m going to take their thoughts and notes into consideration while in this phase.

In essence I’m creating a road map. Once I’m all done, I’ll start the rewrites with my map in hand which will hopefully keep me on course for what’s needed. I don’t want to spend a whole lot of time on this phase, but given the nature of it, I’m sure it will take longer than the previous phases.

I’ll keep you posted as the work progresses. In the meantime, are you working on any projects? How are they coming along for you? Let me know in the comments.

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