Before you freak out and say—“What, I’m doing National Novel Writing Month! I have thousands of words to write, why would I rewrite any one of them!”—notice that I did not say revise. Do not review a scene and revise what you have written until NaNoWriMo is over. Instead, take that scene and write it again in a different setting or from a different point of view.
Here’s an example. Imagine that you’re Stephen King, and you’ve just written that scene from Carrie—you know the one, the prom scene with the pig’s blood. That key scene triggers a series of horrifying events—as it should, it’s a horror story! But perhaps Stephen King wrote it the first time with Sue (the trustworthy friend) interrupting the prank, and the blood gets dumped on her. Then what would Carrie and the others do?
Play with a scene that doesn’t feel quite right, and you may just find the perfect way to move forward. As they say, sometimes the best way to move forward is to rewrite the past!
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