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Writing nonfiction is more like sculpture, a matter of shaping the research into the finished thing. Novels are like paintings, specifically watercolors. Every stroke you put down you have to go with. Of course you can rewrite, but the original strokes are still there in the texture of the thing.
If I wanted to make a quick buck, there's far easier ways of doing it. What I want is to provoke people. If you want a hit song, all you need to do is rewrite an old song. It might have been proven to work, but you won't be remembered the same way.
Civilization had too many rules for me, so I did my best to rewrite them.
The problem is once you've written the opening paragraph and worked out how the rest of the story will go in your head, there's nothing in it for you. I write in longhand using disposable fountain pens on the right-hand side of the notebook for the first draft, then I rewrite some of the sentences and paragraphs on the left-hand side.
If you want to build an open source project, you can't let your ego stand in the way. You can't rewrite everybody's patches, you can't second-guess everybody, and you have to give people equal control.
The social disease of political correctness has entered daily life, inverting good to bad and attempting to rewrite proud histories as an imposition of white supremacy for which we all should make contrition.
My only writing ritual is to shave my head bald between writing the first and second drafts of a book. If I can throw away all my hair, then I have the freedom to trash any part of the book on the next rewrite.
Now, there are some who would like to rewrite history - revisionist historians is what I like to call them.
George W. Bush
Novels are like paintings, specifically watercolors. Every stroke you put down you have to go with. Of course you can rewrite, but the original strokes are still there in the texture of the thing.
I think sometimes I guess you see records, say you want to get there and use that as motivation. In a way, it's kind of cool if there is a possibility to rewrite history and be up there with the greats of Olympic history.
Quite often, I'll be sent a script for a movie. And I find that I like it, so I say I'll do it. But then they rewrite it for me. They make it quirky. Odd. I find that rather annoying. I call it Walkenising.
Let me back up a little and tell you why I prefer writing to real life: You can rewrite. A novel, for example, can be cleaned up, altered, trimmed, improved. Life, on the other hand, is one big messy rough draft.
All we do as songwriters is rewrite the songs that have impressed us till we find our own voice. It's part of learning the craft.
Life may not always fall into neat chapters, and you may not always get the satisfying ending you're looking for, but sometimes a good explanation is all the rewrite you need.
Providing better computer science education in public schools to kids, and encouraging girls to participate, is the only way to rewrite stereotypes about tech and really break open the old-boys' club.
I didn't become a good writer until I learned how to rewrite. And I don't just mean fixing spelling and adding a comma. I rewrite each of my books five or six times, and each time I change huge portions of the story.
I have questioned myself about the brutality in the last few novels. Actually in 'The Leopard,' in hindsight, I feel I went a little bit too far with screaming blood. There are a couple of scenes that I regret and wish I had the chance to rewrite. 'Phantom' has less blood.
Books aren't written - they're rewritten. Including your own. It is one of the hardest things to accept, especially after the seventh rewrite hasn't quite done it.
I've been shocked by film actors - 25 and under - having such confidence and cockiness to rewrite a scene. My background is more about the director being in control. It's all about yielding. It's an oddly submissive relationship in which you're moulded, Pygmalion-style.
I remember that I used to get lots of books from the library, and 'Little Women' was one of them. And I used to just cross out the parts of it that really upset me because it's such a sad book in so many ways. I'd cross out the parts that upset me, and I would rewrite new endings.
I never think of an entire book at once. I always just start with a very small idea. In 'Holes,' I just began with the setting; a juvenile correctional facility located in the Texas desert. Then I slowly make up the story, and rewrite it several times, and each time I rewrite it, I get new ideas, and change the old ideas around.
Like, every couple of months you read, they rewrite, you come back in, they've animated more stuff - they usually videotape you while you're reading it - so they'll incorporate some gestures and some facial expressions into it.
I don't know why directors sign on to these projects and completely rewrite everything.
I'm not patient at all. I avoid writer's block by writing. I power through with a bad version, so I can move on, and usually once I've gotten to the next scene, I'll discover what was missing from the bad version scene. Then I can easily rewrite it to get back on the right path.
I always rewrite the very beginning of a novel. I rewrite the beginning as I write the ending, so I may spend part of morning writing the ending, the last 100 pages approximately, and then part of the morning revising the beginning. So the style of the novel has a consistency.
Joyce Carol Oates
A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
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