Friday, January 27, 2012

Revising the little stuff takes so much time. I spent about five hours at the computer today going line by line through six chapters checking spelling, word usage, and tweaking things just so. My mind is exhausted and I have seventeen chapters to go. A non-writer friend called and I took a much needed break. She asked me what revision I was doing now because I had already done the plot points and meatier changes. I compared it to a teacher grading a paper.

"So then you'll be done and can submit it?"

"Not yet," I told her. "When I think it's perfect, I'll print it up a second time and read it out loud. That way I can find words I left out, sentences that need to be written better, and just anything at all that needs changing."

"That's too hard, I think you should just leave it up to one of those editors. Wait until you hear..."

Works for me. I wonder why I just don't do that?

8 comments:

  1. A friend of mine is going through the same thing right now. It is exhausting for her. :O)

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  2. You're almost there, Cathie! Do you have a tape recorder? I used to record my poems so I could play them back and listen to the rhythm and see if they scanned. It works well with prose, too.

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  3. Diane, tell your friend I'm sending her good wishes from someone who understands :)

    Andrea, What a great idea! I do have an old tape recorder and blank tape tucked in a drawer.

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  4. I'm thinking there's a fine line between sending it off too soon ("let the editor take care of it") and making it the best we can first. Hopefully that point comes before we drive ourselves crazy over endless revisions!

    Good luck as you finish up your revisions :-)

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  5. I think there is a bit of logic in your friend's advice. Edit it the best you can.

    Then stop.

    Because no matter how much you edit the book, your editor is going to shred it. There's not much sense trying to get it perfect. You won't succeed. Do what you can for grammar/structure/story, but if you hope to submit an edit-free piece, I don't believe that's possible.

    Mr/s editor will tear you apart, because no two readers ever see the same story.

    I hope that doesn't come off negative. That's not my intention, and I don't mean to imply you shouldn't edit to the best of your ability, and submit a clean and well-written piece.

    It's only to say that you shouldn't get bogged down with endless revisions, when an editor is only going to do their job by making you edit -- again. You don't want to burn out too soon.


    - Eric

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    Replies
    1. "It's only to say that you shouldn't get bogged down with endless revisions, when an editor is only going to do their job by making you edit -- again. You don't want to burn out too soon."

      You're right, Eric! Especially the burn out too soon part :)

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  6. Too funny! Little do they know... :)

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