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When to post a rewrite

Rohki Obyak

I've been thinking questions around this subject lately. Is there ever a time not to post a rewrite? Should I wait for some turn in the story? Or wait until the end?

Replies:   docholladay  Bondi Beach
docholladay

@Rohki Obyak

I would think it depends on the story. What will work for one story may not work for another story.

Its also possible to post a rewrite separately from the original. That can be good as well since your loyal readers might like to compare how much your skill has improved since you wrote the original version.

Like I said in the first portion, pick what works for the story whether it fits my idea or not.

Bondi Beach

@Rohki Obyak

I've been thinking questions around this subject lately. Is there ever a time not to post a rewrite? Should I wait for some turn in the story? Or wait until the end?


For a significant change in the plot, wait until the end. Significant means: hero dies instead of saving the baby, bad guy is really a good guy, A really had sex with C instead of B, etc.

In other words, if the rewrite will require your readers to go back and read the earlier chapters again to find out where the story is, wait until the end.

For typos and grammatical errors, fix it anytime, the sooner the better; no need to discourage a new reader.

Replies:   ustourist  Rohki Obyak
ustourist
Updated:

@Bondi Beach

To my mind the one thing NOT to do is take the original down once it is complete, but then leave the rewrite as incomplete and inactive, which has happened more than once on SOL and isn't likely to win the author any friends at all.

richardshagrin
Updated:

@ustourist

I try not to interfere with authors who talk about stuff I don't know. In this case I think I may be a typical reader. Why would I want one story absolutely without flaw, when for the same time and effort I could have two, or even more that are well worth reading even if the technical score is average (six) for this site. One editor or proofreader can get the Technical parts up to a seven or eight, at least. The best is enemy of the good. Please post multiple good stories rather than the perfect technically. I can live with homonyms and words spellcheck provided instead of the ones the author intended. Even punctuation that I can parse a meaning from is better than not getting the next story you could have posted if you didn't get fanatic about re-writing and re-editing a just fine good story. Sometimes re-writing leaves its own technical errors.

You own your own time. If you don't feel strongly motivated to write more stories and post them here, I can't change your mind. But if I had my choice I'd vote for more stories, not fewer flawless ones.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@richardshagrin

Why would I want one story absolutely without flaw, when for the same time and effort I could have two, or even more that are well worth reading even if the technical score is average (six) for this site.


The real answer is about the feeling of self-worth. I like to do things to the best that I can do them, so making a story with less flaws makes me feel better. There's also a large element of professionalism in it as well.

One interesting aspect about, for me, is that often while I do an edit / review / revise exercise on a story I often think of ways to improve the stories I'm working on. I also tend to do such exercises when I've hit a writing block on a story, so it also helps with my time management as in not getting bored while working things out in the other stories.

Crumbly Writer

I did a rewrite like you describe. I'd finished three books in a four book series, and expanded it to six books which I cleaned up with more descriptive fleshing out of the characters. I pulled the first story and reposted, so it would get the most views.

The numbers weren't impressive. The scores were better, but the readers couldn't see much difference. (My loyal readers did, but I got a lot of 'I don't see any difference' since the major plot points didn't change. However, the story downloads dropped by about half!

What Richard says makes sense. If you don't modify the plot, you won't gain much by revising the story. You can make corrections any time you want, but I'd discourage you from wasting time cleaning up old stories. It's useful as a learning experience, especially if you can get a decent author or editor to help guide you, but it won't win any new fans. New stories, however, will improve your reputation.

However, if your suffering from writers' block, then cleaning the book up in preparation for self-publishing it is a worthwhile effort, since that will attract new readers.

Rohki Obyak

@Bondi Beach

I figure that introducing new characters earlier would count as significant. Thanks for the input.

Joe_Bondi_Beach

@ustourist

To my mind the one thing NOT to do is take the original down once it is complete, but then leave the rewrite as incomplete and inactive


Second that. Incomplete is worse than minor typos and the like.

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