I really, truly, seriously just don’t fully understand why all of the person are to be thinking that i need to perform a deep, thorough, painful, horrific edit before i publish my blogs or send out my manscrips when I work my fingers to the bone the first time i write them originally.. I’m great righter!!!!
YEAH!! Um, well…I’m a pretty good writer once I edit. Oh. Edit. Editing. That editing thingggggggggg, right…*sigh*
The first time I did a deep edit on my own manuscript — after having pronounced it finished and allowing about 20 people the honor of slogging through it — my head rushed and my face flushed. The work I prided myself on? Dog caca. While the plot and characters rocked (humbly said!), the novel’s errors hid them from view. I could either use it as a rabbit cage liner or edit it, so I wiped my tears on the back of my sleeve, hunkered down, and bled. The result? A book that, while not yet represented or published, is in the hands of three agents and won the WLT MSS contest…and would not have earned a second glance without self-editing, along with the critiques of my AMAZING reader/editor group — Heidi, LeDawn, Paula, Renee, Eric, Susie, Kyle, Peter and Kim. We’re not “there” yet, but we’re making satisfactory progress!
My top tip? Check out The First Five Pages by Noah Lukeman — short, sweet and on-point. This is my go-to editing book.
Also, go to writers’ conferences, attend the classes, network with other writers, and force as many people as you can to read and critique your work before you send it out. Make sure your group is diverse and includes experienced writers.
Also, there’s a wonderful piece on Self-Editing at the Writer Beware Facebook page.
It hurts, but it’s not just “worth it” — it’s 100% necessary.
p.s. This blog is dedicated to the author of the line “house of cards in a hurricane” whose work I have recently had the privilege of reading. You rock!