Storytelling Tip: Write. Rewrite. Edit. Rinse and Repeat.
By Jerry Brown, APR
Public Relations Consultant
Here’s how Tom Coyne, who teaches creative writing at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, put it in an article sent to me by a friend:
“Revision is what separates the pros from the part-timers. Non-writers have some imagination of a writer who sits at a typewriter, crossing out or adding a word every few pages, and finally writing The End and firing up a cigar. That’s a fiction no one will buy. Writers slog through draft after draft after draft after draft . . . being a real writer is more about being a real re-rewriter than anything else.”
Is writing hard? Here’s what Coyne says about that: “Of course it’s hard. It’s pounding your head on a granite countertop hard. It’s a soul-crushing, salvation-stealing, staring-into-the-abyss endeavor rife with rejection, self-loathing and unshakable self-doubt.”
Or, as the late journalist and screenwriter Gene Fowler once put it: “Writing is easy. All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until beads of blood form on your forehead.”
Whether you’re writing your story yourself or have hired someone like me to write it for you, expect to go through some editing. Editing is a key part of writing.
And don’t be afraid to ask a professional writer you’ve hired to make changes. Sometimes people are reluctant to do that because they think they’ll hurt my feelings — or the feelings of whoever they’ve hired.
You’re not going to hurt my feelings. The goal is to get to the best version of your story. Editing and rewriting are part of that process. A good writer wants your feedback. If you’ve hired us, our job is to help you tell your story in a way that you’re happy with.
So, whether you do it yourself or hire someone else to write it for you, editing and rewriting are essential to getting to the best version of your story.
We all have stories to tell. Do you need help telling yours?
Jerry Brown, APR, is a public relations professional and former journalist who helps clients get their stories heard, understood and remembered. Need help telling your story? You can reach Jerry at 303-594-8016 | jerry@JerryBrownPR.com.