Friday, January 27, 2012

On Editing...and Editing...and Editing....

You know that phase of editing where you're analyzing everything? Yeaaaah. I'm there. I have nine more chapters to edit (out of twenty-nine) for Rising Book 1. I'm editing five chapters at a time, first on paper, then making changes on the computer. It is long and exhausting. It's a good thing I like words as much as I do. (I really, really do like editing. I like making something better. I like grammar. I just have a hard time resting when I'm at the end of an editing project.) When it came time to read to my kids at bedtime yesterday, it was so hard to not analyze every sentence I read. I've been searching for missing words (I've found several), extra words (found that too), and passive sentences (ohhh, way too many to count), and cleaning up text and smoothing out dialogue, etc., etc.

I was joined in my editing by Tonks, one of our cats.

"What is this mess? I can do better than this."

"Forget it, I'm taking over."

"Why are you still here? I've totally got this."

There's only so much editing a person can do on a book. 

Wait, let me rephrase: There's only so much editing a person can do on a book before they have to let it go into other hands. Writers will pick and tweak and edit and revise and set their books aside and then do it all over again...and again...because a book is never really done until it it has to be, until it's time for it to go to the printer. And even then, there's much nail-biting. "What if I missed something? What if people pick out a mistake and that's all they notice? What if I forget something? What if, what if, what if..."

I'm sure I've said this in previous blog posts, but sometimes you really just need to smack those what ifs in the face.

It takes a lot to write a book, a lot more to edit and rewrite, and I think sometimes that (annnd I'm editing while I'm blogging O.O) it takes a backbone of steel to let the book go out of our hands and into someone else's.

A lot of you are in various stages of book writing. Starting the first draft of your first book. Working on your tenth novel. Rewriting. Editing. Putting it through beta-readers and critique partners. Perfecting a query. Looking for an agent. Self-publishing. Signing a contract with a publishing company. Handing out review copies. Marketing. Whatever you're doing right now, it takes a lot of work and a lot of courage, so be proud of yourself that you're doing it.

Now I am going to attempt to get some sleep so I can work on more editing tomorrow. Then I get to move on to final blurb tweaking. Oh, joy. <---*sarcasm*

Hope you all have an awesome weekend! ^_^


  1. I'm glad to hear that you print out your MS too! My husband always has a fit when he has to refill the ink on the printer :) But its amazing how many mistakes bounce out when its on paper --- I wonder why that is? (hmmmmmmm)
    Keep up the good work! And I love your editing buddy - how cute.

  2. I'm at a similar stage. It does get hard to think like a normal person after a whille, but it will be finished eventually (right?)


  3. That's the stage I'm at too. So. Many. Words.

  4. I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one who has a cat that thinks they can do a better job at editing.

  5. I'm sure you'll get it done soon. I do a better job editing on paper too. And if I read it out loud. Exciting that you're so close.

  6. Edits are seemingly never ending, but I do love them too. Just wish I had a cat as cute as that one to help me out!

  7. wow. wish i had a cutie helping me edit!
    i get more slobber than anything =)
    have a great wknd!

  8. There is no perfecting - just doing the best we can.
    And I think there's a cat hair in your manuscript.

  9. YOU ARE AMAZING!!!! (make sure you get some sleep) And you are the BEST EDITOR EVER!

    We are never done tweaking, but I think that's a good sign that we're growing :D

    ps such a cute kitty!!

  10. Love you cat. What beautiful colors. I've got family members with cat allergies, so no kittehs for me.

    "When it came time to read to my kids at bedtime yesterday, it was so hard to not analyze every sentence I read."

    I find myself doing this, too! I sometimes have to remind myself to just stop and enjoy the story.

  11. You're doing great, keep going! I enjoy editing, but it does get tedious near the end. Also, I have trouble stopping. I over-edit.
    Your cat is super cute, btw. :)

  12. I love editing and revising, too! I love sentence scrutiny, too. You know... for the first ten chapters. Then it kind of drives me nuts. Just like it drives me nuts reading books while I'm smack in the middle of it! I know just what you mean.

  13. Awww, Tonks, what a cutie. My annoying beasties love to sit on my revisions.

    I enjoy editing, but I tend to edit while drafting too. So writing and editing are sort of synonymous for me...

  14. I like that your kitty is helping you edit. I wish I knew when enough was enough. I am taking Holy Lisle on-line novel revision course. It is brutal and thorough, but I hear from other writers who have used her method that you end up with a very polished MS.

    Good luck and get some sleep.

  15. I'm looking forward to finishing my first draft and printing it out. I want to handle the thing, then tough it out; editing, rewriting, etc.

    My cat likes to try to help me out with the word count, muscling his way in between me and my laptop.

    Happy editing.

  16. Those are some very cute pictures!! Cats are great. :)


Thanks for sharing your thoughts!