Feel free to disregard—I’m on a sleep-dep-fueled ramble of epic proportions* and I can’t promise entertainment value or even marginal coherency.
Okay, so I’ve always been a slash-and-burn reviser, but since December, when this particular rewrite commenced in earnest . . . well, let me just say that in the past three months, I’ve axed like I’ve never axed before.
At this point, I estimate that there are fewer than fifteen thousand original words remaining from what was once a 70k manuscript and is now a different 70k manuscript. I have pulled my hair, and stopped brushing my hair, and gone running a lot, and once I cried when I heard a Jimmy Eat World song on the radio. On these grounds, I could probably be institutionalized.
I have deleted scenes I hated, and scenes that I liked, and even one that I loved, but this is okay, because the book that existed before was sloppy and pedestrian. This new book will be much better. It has to be. It owes me.
Number One Triumph: Since Valentine’s Day, I have written twenty (say it with me, people) TWENTY THOUSAND new words. Not first-draft words, but the RIGHT words. Or at least, okay ones. This is not counting the words that I’ve written and subsequently deleted. There were many. This rewrite is going down. I am killing it like an expletive modified by some other expletive.
More evidence that D is awesome: I waylay him in the kitchen in order to apologize for behaving like an extraterrestrial for the past week, and then go one further, apologizing preemptively for any increasing irrationality, irritability or other weirdness that may yet occur as a result of foregoing sleep and basically all forms of real-life contact.
He says, and I quote, “So, you’re saying there’s going to be pie.”
Me: “Were you listening to me?”
Him: “Yeah, I heard you say that I’d be getting pie. When you stop sleeping, you bake a lot.”
I am tragically predictable. I am married to someone who totally gets me.
Lesson for life (self,write this down): Rewriting a book that you’ve already written is sometimes way, way harder than writing a book that is different.
*ETA: less than epic ramble. But totally ramble-y nonetheless. I do not disappoint.