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Humanities LibreTexts

8.1: Revising- Re-seeing your writing

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    • Alexandra Glynn, Kelli Hallsten-Erickson & Amy Jo Swing
    • North Hennepin Community College & Lake Superior College

    Revising, for most writers, is the most important thing to improving your writing, the most crucial part of the writing process. You may think that a completed first draft means little improvement is needed; you just need to fix errors. Even experienced writers, however, need to improve their drafts, and they rely on peers during revising and editing.

    The short story writer Raymond Chandler said a writer should, “Throw up into your typewriter in the morning. Clean up every noon” (Revision Quotes).


    You may know that athletes miss catches, fumble balls, or overshoot goals. Dancers forget steps, turn too slowly, or miss beats. For both athletes and dancers, the more they practice, the stronger their performance will become. Web designers seek better images, a more clever design, or a more appealing background for their web pages. Writers have the same capacity to profit from improvement and revision.

    Revising is the act of starting the writing process over again. When you have a completed draft, you need to go back and check that the draft works. Take a second look at your ideas. You might add, cut, move, or change information to make your ideas clearer, more accurate, more interesting, or more convincing.


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