Sometimes you need to revisit things, and the less visible you are, the easier this is to do.
This is because sometimes you need to revisit them twice. Thrice. Fourteen times…thirty multiplied by a million.
I’m writing this for writers because even though we are masters of revision, sometimes we need the reminder of how this works. Revision is our happy, methodical, personalized purgatory. The thing is, revision is good advice for everyone. But for the purposes of Writer Wednesday, let’s talk about how this works for writers specifically.
Let’s say a writer has a finished manuscript. Then there’s the rewrite. Then there’s the proofread. Then there’s editing. Sometimes each phase of the process happens several times over. During each phase several sets of eyes look over the thing and pick it apart until the words and phrases cease making sense and the writer is left questioning every punctuation mark and word choice (unless you’ve worked on your self-worth like I told you here).
But what if you’ve already birthed your creation? What if it’s out, flailing around in the world and you’re finding issue with it?
I’m the last person to hem and haw over perfection. I am the queen of letting go of creations and not worrying about them. Really. I had to work to be the opposite. Which is why all the time I had under the radar was a good thing.
We often think invisibility is a bad things for writers and artists (and even entrepreneurs) but it’s not. It can be a really positive thing. Invisibility gives you all the time you need to experiment not only with branding your site (and yourself) but also honing and perfecting your work.
I’ve reworked my writing life so many times it’s funny. When I look back at my earliest blogging days compared to now, it’s unrecognizable. My last novel is in a completely different league than my first. The design of my first blog at the beginning compared to my website now is like comparing tee-ball to the majors. I can track my trajectory from that point. I see the threads tying it up, but I am a completely different person, writer, and professional.
And this is a really good thing.
I experimented with who I was and how I wanted to be as a writing professional. As I understood more about the industry and myself, I came closer and closer to who I wanted to be. I held the vision of that person in my mind and continued to take classes, read, and study. I made connections. I analyzed others’ work and brands. I tweaked. I re-examined my persona and then revised. I redesigned. I tweaked some more. I revisited my books. I reworked more.
I just changed my website for the second time this week.
As an artist this makes sense to me. When I was painting, I would let a painting sit for a while. Then I’d study it from across the room and a foot away. Then I’d get my brushes out and tweak until the thing felt finished.
If a painting was hanging in the Guggenheim, it probably wouldn’t withstand a tweak like this, but a show at the tiny gallery down the street won’t make much of a difference. Invisibility is a special kind of resource. Use it to revisit and revise until it’s gone – because it’s not a renewable resource. Eventually it will disappear, but by that time, you’ll have your brand and your work completely awesome.
How have you revisited your work? How have you used invisibility to your advantage? Leave a comment and tell me all about it!
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