Google defines revision as "the act of revising." So let's look at the definition of revise:
re·viserəˈvīz/verbgerund or present participle: revising
- reconsider and alter (something) in the light of further evidence. Source: Google Translate
By that definition, when we are revising a work of literature, we're altering our story based on new evidence. Whether it's a missing word, a word count goal, the need for character development or plot clarification. We've read it, we realized something is missing or weak, and we have to try again.
Revision looks different to every writer, every author. I believe revision is as much a creative process as writing, which is why there isn't a "set method" for revision. Everyone has tips, suggestions, their own methodology. I have my own as well. This is a handful of sentences and a visual aid, as I begin my listening to Earth Borne and taking revision notes.
My first step in tackling an entire manuscript: re-read it once, taking small and careful notes about minor changes. Focus more on listening than changing. I listen to my story aloud, now using a text to speech (TTS) program called Natural Reader 14, since I'm dreadful at reading without falling asleep. I keep a document open to take notes (or to make small changes to the actual story) for round one. My personal addition is that I like to add notes in dialogue form to any and all of my drafts and revisions. It helps me hear the characters.
Do you have something you do as your first revision step? Anything you'd like to share? Feel free to comment below! What works for me may not work for you, and your style may be really helpful to another writer, so please: don't keep it to yourself!