I started writing seriously when I was a preteen and one of the first bigger projects I tackled had to be an epic novel. Needless to say, while I enjoyed myself, the quality was less than desirable. Plot holes, one-dimensional characters, god-awful dialogue: you name it. A couple of years ago I went back into my old document for shits and giggles, but found that I still loved the storyline. I mutilated the draft and was pleased.
Skip forward another few years and I find myself going back in and fleshing it out in my spare time. I wasn’t happy with the ending and found new inspiration. Then I went back into my world building, aiming for more depth and consistency and have found myself constantly daydreaming about the plot and the setting. I feel like it’s made progress.
Do you think it’s a waste of time going back and rewriting a story instead of working with new and better material? Keep in mind this is a story I started twelve years ago and it’s now 200 some pages long. Is it common to have a writing process that isn’t linear and that takes so long?