Do you need to know more about how to revise your novel?

My daughter took Think Sideways. Wrote her first novel. Is working on revising it now.

And she said, “You know, I sort of get the One-Pass Revision, but I wish you had something a lot more in-depth for people who still aren’t sure which parts of what they’ve written are good, and which parts need to go. I want to have the whole thing broken down into tiny steps.”

Other people have said the same thing.

The One-Pass Revision is the way I revise my novels now. But now, I know how to look at characters, decide which need to stay and which need to go, and which need to be folded into other characters. I know where my writing was good and where it was bad. I can spot failed plotlines. I can identify the holes where description, conflict, and backstory should go.

When I was just getting started, my revision process was equally grueling, but different. I didn’t know the things I know now, so my process didn’t take anything for granted.

I still remember how I revised back then, and I wouldn’t mind teaching that method.

I’m just not sure how many people would actually want to spend three or four months doing a really intensive revision on their novels.

If this is something that would interest you, post here and let me know.

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364 responses to “Do you need to know more about how to revise your novel?”

  1. Angela Avatar

    Of course I’d like that course! PLEASE!

  2. Roma Avatar


  3. Cristina Avatar

    Absolutely, yes. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Berni Avatar

    As I am working on my very first novel, I most definitely would find this proposed course helpful.

  5. Jaime Theler Avatar

    I would be interested, for sure. Thanks for all you share!

  6. Sapphire Avatar


  7. Tom Saine Avatar
    Tom Saine

    Yes, sounds like it would be helpful, that is, if the price isn’t to much. I’m on a fixed income so money is a constant problem. Do you give senior discounts?

  8. LCC Avatar

    Yes! More, please!

  9. Jean Avatar

    Definitely, please and thank you. Not sure I can afford a course, but having the option would still be great. I’m making great strides with the One-Pass method, but there are still things I’m not sure about.

  10. Danielle Avatar

    Yes, I’d love to have this on hand for when I *cough* finish my novel.

  11. John1084 Avatar

    Yes I would, and what’s a Nano novel? I must have been absent that day.

    1. Holly Avatar

      NaNoWriMo is National Novel-Writing Month, in which lunatics novelists from around the world sit down to torture themselves write at least 50,000 words of novel in the month of November.

      This process creates a whole lot of very hairy first drafts.

  12. jeC Avatar

    I’m not sure if I’d be interested in signing up for or buying a course about detailed revision, but a short (or.. not so short ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) article that goes a little more into tips, decisions, methods and etc., I would defintely love to look at.
    Thanks for your continued support, encouragment and words of wisdom. Love you, Holly~<3

  13. Eline Avatar

    yes, please! its exactly what i need!

  14. Mike Avatar


  15. Clifford Avatar

    I have four novels, all in first-draft stage. I would love to know how to revise them.

  16. Tami Avatar

    I’d like to learn more as well.

  17. Rohi Shetty Avatar
    Rohi Shetty

    Yes, oui, ya and yea.

  18. Marli Avatar

    Yes, I would like to know more about revising my novel & short stories. Thanks so much…Marlene

  19. J. P. Wickwire Avatar

    Oh, I would be most interested in something like this. As a struggling novelist who can’t seem to edit anything in its entirety, this sounds like just what I need ๐Ÿ˜€

  20. Kathleen Avatar

    Yes! Absolutely interested. I love your ‘teaching voice’, Holly and would sign up today if this class was offered. Thank you for considering it!

  21. Chad-Michael Simon Avatar
    Chad-Michael Simon

    I would be interested in the course. ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. Sylvielisea Avatar


  23. Suzi Avatar

    Sounds good to me! ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Texanne Avatar

    Oh, I’d much rather spend four months revising than to spend the same amount of time staring at the ceiling and wondering what’s wrong!
    I’d love to take the course.

  25. Liza Avatar

    Sounds like something that would help me.

  26. Emma Avatar

    Yes please!

  27. Sonja Avatar

    Yes, please!

  28. Yvonne Avatar

    Yes, I would consider taking this course

  29. Dave Murray Avatar
    Dave Murray

    My answer is YES!
    Before signing up for How to Think Sideways, I did nine revisions on my novel, and most of them resulted in polishing a lot of unnecessary baggage. HtTS one pass editing has taken me through the tenth edit, but yet one more will be needed to catch continuity errors made by extensive rearranging. If I had written the novel using Sideways, I might have been able to do two passes. My next novel will follow the steps in Sideways!
    I hope you can make the new course free to graduates of Sideways or work out something because my job is cut as of September 5, and I won’t be able to pay for it.

  30. Neyska Avatar

    I would definately be interested in this. I have 4 novels through first draft and am struggling through the process of revising now.

  31. Rett Avatar

    I also am interested in this. I have one written, working on another. No luck yet, but trying.

  32. Kimberly Gardner Avatar

    I often spend three/four months revising my novels anyway and end up still unsure about the ultimate result. I would definitely be interested in a revision course with you. Your methods really click with me and everything I’ve bought from your shop has proved to be a terrific investment.

  33. Heather Avatar

    This sounds like a wonderful idea. I’m about two thirds finished with my first novel, and I’ve been wondering exactly how I was going to revise. Wonderful idea, Holly!

  34. Elizabeth Avatar

    YES, please!! ๐Ÿ˜€

  35. Tracey Avatar

    I think this sounds like a great addition to the wealth of knowledge you already offer. It would be very helpful.

  36. Kristina Avatar

    Yes, please, I would be very interested in this course because that is the one thing with which I am currently struggling in regards to the rough draft of my first novel.

  37. Jessica Avatar

    This would be so helpful! include me please.

  38. aims Avatar

    Include me in the need to know. Thanks!

  39. Lois Eighmy Avatar

    I would definitely be interested in something like this. I’ve got several novels needing revision. I’ve also got several I’m currently working on! ๐Ÿ˜› Thanks!


  40. Cora Zane Avatar

    Yes, yes, yes!!! ๐Ÿ˜€

  41. Greta Avatar

    Yes! This would be a wonderful course.

  42. Gene Avatar

    Definitely. Im on chapter nine, and don’t know how sany chapters yet. Have been giving much thought about revision, and frankly the whole magilla froightens the heck out of me! Help!

  43. tony Avatar

    yes please!

  44. Angelyn Avatar

    yes, absolutely

  45. jeannette Avatar


  46. Tim Avatar

    Yes, yes, yes please do a course on revising a novel.

  47. Pat Avatar

    Absolutely, I would love a course on revision. I am having fits trying to fix my book, so much mixed advice, so many external considerations. I’m losing the love. . . .

    Cheers, Pat

  48. Karen Avatar

    YES – this course would be most welcome!!

    1. Kathleen Avatar

      Much needed — yes

  49. Bree Avatar

    I’m always up for learning something new, and this sounds extremely helpful!

    Yes! ๐Ÿ™‚

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