Friday, August 2, 2013

How do you know when you are done: Advice from Mary Amato

Mary Amato was kind enough to respond to my query about how a writer knows when she is "done" with a project:

How do I know when I'm done? Definitely NOT by reading and re-reading and re-reading.

I step away from the pages, from my carefully-crafted sentences and I consider the big picture of the story. I often do this by creating a kind of visual outline or map of the story and then looking at it to see if it all adds up.

I try to show this in my videos that I post on the writing process. [For Mary's tips on the writing process, see the Resources Index on her web site.]

 Usually once I have everything right with the plot, then the voice and the writing comes more easily. Then I know when I'm done if I feel what my characters are feeling in every scene.

 --Mary Amato

[Feel free to send me your ideas on how you know when you are "done" and I'll share them in future posts.]