I've spent the past week reworking my manscript to change Kendall, one of my characters from being a girl who merely disliked Seth's dead friend Isaac to being Isaac's ex-girlfriend. In most ways, things haven't changed much. Some of Kendall's motivations are different now, the way Seth sees her has changed, and certain bits of dialogue and backstory had to be entirely rewritten. But the truth is, Kendall's scenes have remained more or less intact. Even though I hadn't wanted to make the change in the first place because of the work involved, once I accepted that this was the best thing for my story and got down to it, I actually found the process fascinating. Before this, I never really noticed how there are just certain moments in a manuscript that, no matter what you do to them, will still hold the key to everything.
In an early-ish scene, Kendall comes to Seth to talk about Isaac. The scene has been in existence for most of 2007, and I was always pleased with how it turned out. In fact, this scene is one of the reasons I didn't want to change Kendall because I liked what she said, how she handled herself. But now I have made the change. Kendall couldn't say what she'd said before. Not unless I wanted her to be a liar. So, she said all new stuff. Maybe it isn't as powerful as what she'd said before, but it fits who she is now and tells exactly what she's about so that Seth and readers can finally understand where she's coming from.
And she does it in what amounts to two small paragraphs. A total of seven sentences. Wow.