A re-write sounds easy on paper. “What i’ll do is, i’ll bring him in there, cut that down, move that, make them go here and she can do this, and then that’s the end”, you say to yourself. But about one fifth of the way in and i am standing in a shattered terrain.
It’s like when the wife says – “what we’ll do is, we’ll knock that wall down and redecorate, then move that there and this here.” Sounds easy. But then there’s that middle bit, where you’ve basically smashed everything up, ripped off old boards and beams, and torn out plaster. Filth clouds about your house, and trail of grime goes after you. You’re past the point of no return. You can’t remember what the place used to look like, and you don’t know what it’s supposed to end up being. This is the doldrums that awaits you when rewriting. You sit and survey the ruin, breathe in the dust and wonder if you should have bothered.
Anyway. I’m just about done with a scratchy redraft, which i haven’t invested too much quality in because i’m trying to work in broad strokes, then move in on the details.
It takes some time, some banging your head against a wall until you start to feel a shine about what you’re doing (ALERT: Another “heads up, keep calm and carry on” sort of note to self).