It can be hard to let go of those well-written gems. Some ways that help me to make it a little less painful:
Stuff-I-Might-Use-Later document. I put the sections I’ve taken out into another document ‘for later’. Somewhere in my brain, I have a vague notion that ‘later’ may never arrive for most of them, but I feel a little better, knowing they are there if I need them. At least they haven’t been totally zapped from existence.
Stay Focused on the Goal. Reminding myself of how much stronger the story is now, even though I’ve cut out some parts I liked, helps me to stay on track with my revision. I’m always asking:
Do I need this part?
Did I already show this in a different place?
Can I put this into another scene so it can do ‘double duty’?
Play Mind Games. One thing I like to do is to tell myself that I’m ‘just trying it out’ to see if it works. I always have the old version (and a few different versions as I go) if I don’t like it.
Although revision is hard, it's also rewarding. My story is a lot better and it feels like pieces are falling into place. I'm working harder, but having more fun than ever as the story takes new directions.How do you get through a tough revision? What’s the hardest part?
P.S. I'm also over at MiG Writers this week, sharing some tips on Creating Characters That Live Outside the Story.