Post By Dylan
Kate Elliott’s blog. This blog was about the importance of re-reading and narrative. By the time I was done reading I knew what I was going to blog about: the importance of re-reading and its importance to the revising process.
While Mrs. Elliott’s blog was mostly about human nature and how stories can connect us all, that is not my message. She talked about re-reading stories instead of carrying on with what she calls the “what’s next” feeling (It is common now-a-days, and I am a major offender of this). This is when we do not slow down and re-read those books that gave us so much insight. Instead we carry on to read the next book and get the next thrill.
While I was musing over Mrs. Elliott’s words I realized what a source of inspiration re-reading can be. I reflected on all of the books I’ve read and the different point of view I would bring when I revisited those texts. That inspired me and made me realize that this process could become pivotal to revising, because when you are re-reading your own writing, you approach it with a different point of view because you are a different person than you were when you initially wrote your story. Just like re-reading one of your favorite novels.
I feel like we are constantly evolving throughout our lives, not only as writers, but also as people. So, when we look back on our old manuscripts, the most common reaction is, “what was I thinking when I wrote that?” Re-reading a book could do the same thing for you, putting the tale in a completely new light that can inspire you, allowing you to see intricate new workings in your story. Embracing this new point of view is important while editing because throughout the course of your second, third and fourth drafts you hope that your story is improving and becoming more in depth while your point of view evolves. Each draft sheds more light in a way you never saw before.
Re-reading a book can really grease the pumps for the revising process, because it now opens your eyes to that new point of view that has been developing. It fine tunes it so you can be better prepared to nit-pick the material in your prior draft.
So, next time you are thinking about the revising process try re-reading a book that inspired you.
Dylan is a writer and a high school sophomore at Erie High School.