Many moons ago when I finished the first draft of my book I began to do some research on how to go about editing it. I came across this little piece of advice.
So you've written a novel. Congratulations. Now put it aside and write it again.
My eyes bugged out like a cartoon character on Looney Tunes and a big WHAT went off in my head like a siren. Were they crazy? Why would anyone do that?
Now that I'm old and wiser and a little more experienced I still think it's crazy advice. No, actually I don't. While I don't know if I would actually rewrite a novel from memory without ever going back to my first draft, I do see some benefits of rewriting sections from scratch.
Too often I find myself trying to intermingle new words with old, forcing them to work together. I push and I shove like a child trying to put a square block into a round hole. When all I really need to do is say good bye to that sentence and start fresh.
This weekend I rewrote the first three pages of my book. I had received some advice that made the light bulb go off over my head. It was definitely an A-ha moment. So I re-wrote some sections from scratch, and combined those sections with older ones. Hopefully now I have a better opening.
What about you? After your finished that first draft have you ever considered rewriting the whole thing or do you mix the new with the old?