Should I go back and edit my book now or should I wait until I finish the book?

OK so I'm on chapter 43 of My novel. I added a new character and I want to change the ages of the main characters but I'm not finished with the novel yet. Should I keep writing or go back now and reread it and edit what I already wrote?

Updates:
This is my second draft. I rewrote the story so the subject is different but the genre is the same

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Most Helpful Guy

  • Finish your first draft. Step away from it for a month or so, and then start the rereading/editing process from page 1.

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    • I did not finish my first draft because I decided to change the story completely so I rewrote it. My second draft that I'm writing is the one that I'm asking about. I only keep the first draft for content reference

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    • Maybe you should write it as four different stories, then afterwardsyyou could intertwine them or what ever else you wanted.

    • Maybe you should write it as four different stories, then afterwardsy you could intertwine them or what ever else you wanted.

Most Helpful Girl

  • I'd wait until you finish it, unless you have some burning opinions right now on what and where and how to edit it, in which case, you might wanna do it now, but not entirely, because you never know where this book might take you in the end. You might have to remove a lot of what you've originally written.
    Most books, at their end stages, retain in entirity maybe 20% of what was originally written...

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    • This sucks because this is my second draft of this novel. I literally rewrote it from a blank page. I saved the first draft of course and I want to focus in more on certain characters, but it feels like I have a lot of stuff going on in one novel. It feels like I he like mini stories and most of the chapters. I'm going crazy I feel like I'm going to tear my eye balls out

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    • Yea, John Green (popular young adult author) says he ends up keeping like 4% of his original draft. It's not a waste though, the other 96% or 80% still really helps your writing.

    • Thank you =)

What Guys Said 11

  • o_o 43 chapters!

    Maths: 5,000 words per chapter x 43 = ... 215,000 words.

    ._.

    215,000 / 300 = 716 pages.

    ;_; I suck.

    OH LAWD!

    HOW CAN I KEEP UP!

    Anyway, keep going, you never know what else you'll want to shift. Unless of course it matters a lot. Then go back. Unless you want to keep going.

    ...

    ...

    ;_; Keep going.

    [dies inside]

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    • Thanks but don't feel that you sick
      As I started writing the book I realized that I wanted to add and change things. This is actually my second rewrite of a novel.

      Like @littlesally said most likely I will most likely have only 20% of my novel left over once I edit the content

      So just because it's a lot doesn't necessarily mean it's going to finish that way, in fact I'm quite annoyed at how long it is going to be because I already know what to cut out now

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    • I think you'll do well whatever you choose to write. You have that tenacity.

  • No. Go with the flow. Make changes later.

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  • Keep writing. Save all of that for editing at the end. If you keep going back and changing things it will put you off track. This is coming from a person also writing an autobiography ;)

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  • The more complete and perfect your novel is in your eyes, the better. I'm writting and rewritting all the time myself.

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    • It's not even complete

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    • Well saddly I end up being the opposite. And that's why I have mountains of drafts.

    • I lost my old stories but I wrote a novel back in high school it was edited and complete I even sent it out publishers but I stopped sending it because I felt that I was not original enough

  • Keep the most important information about your new characters written down somewhere, finish the draft of the story. Or if anything you can include the new character in from now, be sure to save this as a new document otherwise you'll forget. Another alternative is to rewrite chapters that you know you want your new character to appear.

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    • While I was writing I decided to add that character, but yea that makes sense I'm just writing the story as if I already edited it so at least I know that I can always go back and edit the story from the beginning. Also, I wrote down some notes on what I want to edit and I wrote down the new character as well. This is hard

    • Hopefully you have a character profile of the new character. Good luck.

    • The funny thing is he is the only new character that is known about in the book but he is not present so me adding him is like putting a body to his name

  • Are you the one who was facing trouble with day dreaming and I advice you to channel your dream into novel writing?

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  • edit it if the change of age is a big difference to the point where the whole story wouldn't make sense. For example a 15 year old vs a 18 year old.

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  • I would wait until the end of the book

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  • lol@ people I've never spoken to blocking me...

    if it's your first book and you're looking to get published... it's too long.

    notice how Harry Potter progressively got longer and longer. same theme is evident from many authors.

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    • #1What does people blocking you have to do with my question

      #2 I never stated how long my book was

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    • It's against the rules to have two accounts

    • And for all you know each chapter could contain a 1000 or less words. Plus it's a first draft, size doesn't matter at this point in the writing process.

  • I would say finish it first, if you keep on editing before you finish you may never finish.

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    • I decided to write down my editing ideas instead of go back that way when I finish the book at least I know I can always go back and edit it.

    • That's a really good idea!

    • I feel like there are so many things I want to add, and the story is taking too long to finish

      I actually am excited for the first time in my life to edit it because it's going to be too fucking long

  • Finish the book, but keep a note of the changes you want to make, as well.

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What Girls Said 1

  • I would finish it first and set it aside for awhile. That way, when you come back to edit you'll have fresh eyes.

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