To Rewrite or Not? That is the Question.

dog and laptop textTo rewrite Love in the Vines, or not? That is the question. I’m fishing for your opinion.
Last year I wrote and self published my first e-book Love in the Vines.
Set in the intoxicating world of wine and food, Love in the Vines is pure contemporary romance escapism. A smorgasbord of food, wine, love and betrayal.
“Like wine, love begins in the vines. Betrayal begins in the heart of a marriage.”
Not blessed with the patience gene, I feigned nonchalance while anxiously waiting for the book reviews to coming rolling in (…oh the naivety!).
Reviews can be as rare as hen’s teeth and it wasn’t until a month or so after I had published that one landed. Thankfully, it was a good one.
A few months later I had garnered more than a handful.
A couple of the reviewers delved deeper to expose technical flaws that had distracted them from enjoying the story. The two frustrating, and sometimes confusing issues they shared was; the inconsistency of writing from the first person point of view. The shallow development of one of my main characters didn’t help my cause.
When a trusted friend who had also read my book shared the same feedback I knew something was off kilter…
Being slightly obsessive, and not happy to leave anything that needs fixing broken, I don’t want to sit back and listen, and learn “for next time.”
As hard as some of it is to swallow – there’s no denying feedback is worth its weight in gold, and I want to do something positive with it.
I’d drive myself around the bend if I thought I had to do this every time someone wrote a negative review. But, in this instance there is a trend…the story is great, but technically it needs a little work.
This gave me the idea to take my book off sale, iron out the technical kinks, and make some necessary changes. To me, doing this is a no brainer.
I’m sure if I’m honest, and explain what I’m doing I won’t annoy anyone who has already read Love in the Vines. After all, I’m not reinventing the words or changing the plot, but just giving my book some editing TLC.
By the time the revised version of Love in the Vines is back on sale, I hope the nagging voice inside my head of “come on, you’ve got to do something” will be silenced.
Have you, or do you know a writer who has published a book, only to take it off sale to make editing changes before putting it back on sale? Is this common, or a total no-no?
I look forward to hearing from you.

10 thoughts on “To Rewrite or Not? That is the Question.

  1. Hi Magdalena, Yes, I did it. I thought I had a book that was good and I did receive some good reviews, but also some bad. I found an editor I could work with and I had the book edited. It didn’t change the plot or characters, just the depth of the story and some technical issues. It’s selling well. I am not an expert, but it worked out for me. Good luck.

    • Hi Marianne – thanks for your feedback, I’m in a similar situation. I thought I had a good book…but what do I know!!! I think I’m going to take your words on board and start the hunt for an “proper editor” – if that makes sense. I’ll keep you posted. Thanks again for your comment.

  2. That is a hard question to answer. Can you fix it without making “changes” to the story or characters? Would the changes be more cosmetic, or do you need to get under the hood and fix it? If the voice in your head is getting louder, and you can fix it without altering major points, then I would do it, if it were me. Hope that helps!

  3. from one fellow obsessive to another; i can only but sympathise. once the nagging voice starts it’s daily muttering the only recourse is to resolve the issue irregardless of the outcome…do what your instincts tell you…the buddha said ” suffering is resistance to what IS “…change the IS ?



  4. I don’t think anyone ever writes a truly successful book without the help of a good editor. I think finding that person would be my first quest.

    • So true! I had the help editing for Love in the Vines, but as the dollars are in short supply I couldn’t stretch for a professional….I think I’ve found someone who has editing experience, and is a trained journalist….here’s hoping 🙂

  5. I haven’t published an ebook, but I’m a big fan of rewrites as necessary. It sounds like you have a really quality story, but if there are certain aspects that distract your readers from fully enjoying the yarn you’ve spun than I say rewrite! The cool thing though is that you’ve got a great base to work from. 🙂 Great!!!

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