Thoughts I’ve Been Having And An Update

February’s writing goal has been going really well! So far I’ve managed to make every day save four, which I think is pretty good.    I’ve been dividing up the 750 words between my poetry doc titled “The Only Time We Forgot” which is at 3,226 words and my flash fiction doc simply titled “750” which is at 1536 words.   And I feel pretty good about everything I’ve done.

So recently I’ve been feeling stuck. Like I’m going in circles with my creativity and not going anywhere.  And I’ve actually been a little bit scared that I don’t have what it takes to write a novel anymore.  I know that’s dumb, but all I’ve been writing since November is poetry and flash fiction, and I’ve just been sort of scared that I don’t have the patients or the creativity to write a novel.  To top it all off, this month has been going so well and is ending rather quickly, so I’ve been dreading my goal for March.  My goal for next month is to pick something and completely edit/revise it for the whole of the month, and I’ve been planning to do a novel.
I was talking about this to my husband, whose also a writer (I guess I haven’t told you all much about him) today and he was being lovely and encouraging.  He ended up giving some really great pointers on how to help myself edit and so I’ve been feeling a lot better about myself and my abilities and next month’s goals.

The point though, of telling you this, is to ask if you have any thoughts or advice on editing. Maybe something that helps you edit when you’re in a slump, or how you get it all done. Editing is such a daunting task and I would be very grateful to get as much help as I can.  So thank you all in advance, I really really appreciate it.

 

 

4 comments

  1. Hmm, editing.
    My first recommendation would be to plan on going through the novel several times. The first time, just edit for content-changes (things that affect the story, larger-scale edits). Don’t be afraid to utilize the “comments” tool of whichever word processing tool you use, and leave yourself notes on things you want to add/change/etc – this way you don’t have to get bogged down in a single area of the novel for too long if you don’t want to.

    Once you’ve done all the major revising/rewriting you want to do, run a quick spell-check through the document.

    Then go through and line-by-line do your own spelling/grammar/punctuation check.

    Make note of words you overuse.

    Read the manuscript out loud.

    Try going through the story backwards (I know that sounds silly, but I’m serious, it can really help you catch things you missed the first 6 times you’ve been through the document).

    Hopefully something in there is helpful to ya! Bonne chance!

  2. I haven’t done a full-scale edit in awhile since I haven’t finished any books for a long time… but last time, I printed the novel out and read through it, making notes on the side (you can make notes on the computer too like Jenelle said). It really depends how much editing you think you have to do. I also made a list of the scenes which helped me to keep track of some things. Mostly, just dive in fearlessly and don’t forget to take it one step at a time. Editing can be EXTREMELY daunting, but when you take it slow it’s not too bad. Oh, I’m also a big fan of highlighting problem areas in yellow… that way I know that I need to do something with that area, but I don’t have to deal with it right away. I think the first read-through is best for just seeing where you are and possibly making notes. Sorry this is babbly, I’m a little scattered today. Best of luck! I know you can do it! ^_^

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