Tuesday, January 14, 2014
Baking the Story
When I first started writing, I came across advice encouraging writers to let their completed manuscripts languish out of sight for at least a month. At the time I thought, "Never!"
Last year while working through my creative writing course, I rushed through one of my short story drafts, and because of time or circumstance, I happened to let it sit. There it was, printed, next to my spot at the kitchen table, never out of sight.
Over the course of a month or so, I often thought about my story. It wasn't done. I knew I wanted more from it, but I didn't quite know what to do with it.
I talked about the story with my husband, who had some ideas, and at some point I had the "aha!" I had been waiting for. I edited the story again, and it was much better, more what I wanted to achieve.
The next story I wrote, once again, I let it sit, and when my husband asked if I was finished the story, I told him it was baking. That's how I've come to think of this resting time; it's cooking. No point in taking it out before it's done.