I'm deep in revisions for my WIP and OMG, reach for the red pen -- how it has changed. While the basic premise remains, and it has the same cast of characters and settings, almost everything else is different. And, hopefully, richer and much deeper on every emotional level.
I drafted this novel in fits and starts. Some days I thought I would zoom along and finish the darn thing in a week. Some days I couldn't open the file. And it wasn't until I began revising that I understood why. I was not connected to my main character emotionally. I liked him. A lot. But I wasn't letting him hurt. He was so strong initially. So sure of himself. I had to remind myself that it's okay if he shows the rest of the world strength, but my most important job is to let my characters speak the truth to themselves and to let the readers listen.
My favorite books are ones that put a knot in my stomach or a lump in my throat. Preferably both. And my goal as a writer is to deliver lots of knots and lumps. Because if writing doesn't ring true emotionally, can it succeed?