How long you let the first draft of your book rest - sort of like bread dough between kneadings - is entirely up to you, but I think it should be a minimum of six weeks . If you've never done it before, you'll find reading your book over after a six-week layoff to be a strange, often exhilarating experience. It's yours, you'll recognize it as yours, even be able to remember what tune was on the stereo when you wrote certain lines, and yet it will also be like reading the work of someone else, a soul-twin perhaps. That is the way it should be, the reason you waited. It's always easier to kill someone else's darlings than it is your own.
Lots of other great writer quotes at Quote It Write
-- via Twitter from littlebrown