I am beginning to develop an aching suspicion that every time I read my work it gets worse. This fourth draft of my novel, STRONGHOLD, is proving the most slow of my revisions thus far.

Here’s the scenario. I open the third draft and star reading aloud, as if I were recording an audiobook. Anytime I get hung on a clause, require a double-take, or hear something “off”, I stop and re-assess the sentence. Simple enough, right?  Well, it is until you correct your first sentence and throw off the cadence of your paragraph, which requires the re-writing of said paragraph in its entirety…which of course must be re-read in conjunction with the paragraphs before and after it. And let’s say that I hit another speed bump in that re-reading. Then the process resets itself. And so on.

Friday, I got caught on a single sentence for 90 minutes (yeah, that happened); and the best version of said sentence came to me not while at my desk but during a run that afternoon. I had to stop and dictate it into my phone so I would not forget. I have a feeling this is the way things will go in October.

I won’t lie. This is taxing. I get pretty exhausted when it seems that not a single clause is up to par. Considering that this is just the rough draft compounds the difficulty. Once my proofreaders, editors, and samplers get finished reading it, they may discover a new host of problems–problems which will require my completing this task again on the fifth draft (which I hope to have done by year’s end).

Man, what have I gotten myself into?

Well, that’s easy. Writing. For others. For those to whom my novel may give a glimmer of hope or a construct by which to battle their own sin. Or for those who may find an insight regarding their relationship to the Lord. Or for those who want an entertainment that encourages their faith. On their behalf, draft four is kicking my butt.

Worth it.

Thanks for reading – C