The other day I posted to a friend in a private forum that if I had known that my Writer Site post was going to be Freshly Pressed I might have spent a little more time on it. I could have read it with a critical eye–expanded some passages, perhaps cropped others. I could have edited more.
As I pondered this notion, I thought I could have added some research, links, more images or videos, and doodads to jazz it up, too. Or not. Maybe that wouldn’t have been a good idea. The story needed to speak for itself.
My mind went back and forth and all around, wondering if I could have done more. Have you ever felt that way? Like maybe if you could just have a do-over.
But even as I was writing and thinking (thoughts going more RPMs than the written words), I thought how spending a lot of time editing and sweating over each blog post would be like always wearing your best underwear in case you’re in an accident. Or always having the house cleaned in case you have guests. But blogging, when it’s done in a routine, is wearing your everyday underwear and allowing dust to lie on the coffee table. It’s allowing yourself to just live (or to write).
This is very different from other types of writing–at least for me.
In writing my book, which is a memoir, I revise over and over again. I am not happy with one chapter, one scene, maybe not even one paragraph . . . yet. When I finish the project, it will have taken ten years, or so I anticipate.
I’m planning to start compiling a poetry manuscript. The only problem is that I am not satisfied with any of my poems. I will think I am, then I get second thoughts and want to revise again. On occasion, I’ve revised the life right out of a poem and have had to delete it completely. Mostly, the poems get better the more I work on them.
When does revision stop? I don’t know because I am still in the revision process for most of my work. Even my published poems are being revised.
Other than Spell Check and a once through for glaring errors, my blog posts don’t get revised unless I find new information that I need to add to a post, and then I make it clear that I am adding something at a later time. (One caveat: if I do a re-read after I hit “publish” and find a typo, I do correct it).
Fellow bloggers, how do you feel about revising and editing blog posts? Do you do it or just click publish after you write a draft? And if you write elsewhere, how does your blog post writing process differ from that of your other writing?