Oh, how I love these quotes from great writers on the art of revision. Read The Atlantic article here.
My favourites are these two:
Interviewer: How much rewriting do you do?
Hemingway: It depends. I rewrote the ending of Farewell to Arms, the last page of it, 39 times before I was satisfied.
Interviewer: Was there some technical problem there? What was it that had stumped you?
Hemingway: Getting the words right. —Ernest Hemingway, The Paris Review Interview, 1956
“Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” —Mark Twain
What about you? Do you believe the best writing is rewriting?