Polishing a draft: to nitpick or not to nitpick?

REVISING A MANUSCRIPT

When you’re revising your writing, do you relish the chance to make it shine or agonize that all your polishing may be for nothing when you need to revise the next draft?

I’ve been doing structural edits on my work in progress, a middle grade thriller, and despite the fact that line edits will be next – the nitpicking examination of each sentence – I can’t stop myself from polishing the sentences even at this structural stage.

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Highland cattle and other miracles of writing at Moniack Mhor

In February I had the chance to attend a week-long retreat at Moniack Mhor, Scotland’s creative writing centre near Inverness, and I’ve rarely been so nervous before anything. The Monday-to-Saturday retreat is a big part of the Scottish Book Trust New Writers Awards that I won in January, but I wasn’t at all sure how I’d fare, or whether I could cope with so much untrammeled writing time.

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