I love writing! I detest editing my writing! I wish I could write it perfectly the first time and never have to work on it again. I’m not that good of a writer though. I don’t think there are many writers that write everything perfectly on the first try. The picture above is me working on my third revision of my current work in progress.
I’m about a quarter of the way through this revision and I’m starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. It is gradually starting to become a product that I think I would be happy sending out into the world and self publishing. I joined a very awesome critique community at Scribophile.com and I think I will use them completely for everything I write in the future, but I’m antsy to get my current work in progress out there for people to be able to buy, ermm…I mean for people to be able to read, and Scribophile moves just a little too slow for my taste. You do get some excellent reviews there and I definitely do plan on putting my future writings there. I plan on approaching it kind of like you approach test driven code in programming. I’ll write a chapter and then I’ll post a chapter for a critique. That’s the plan at least, but I need to get this novel out of the way first.
I’ve realized that my editing abilities are very limited. I’m decent enough at reading through my manuscript and editing sentences to make them flow better and fixing typos and the sort, but I really struggle with looking outside the confines of the structure of what I’ve written and noticing things that need to be added. I’ve been struggling with that throughout the entire editing process and I hope this short fall doesn’t keep me from adequately portraying the images that I have in my head.
I’ve considered using a freelance professional editor, but realistically the things they would be helping me with are the things that I am pretty sure I can fix on my own. There aren’t many editors that would would say, “OK, he’s sitting in a red leather chair by a brick fireplace, but what does the fire smell like? What is he wearing? What does he like to eat every Tuesday for lunch?” I know those are some pretty obscure questions and don’t really have anything to do with setting up a scene like that, but I think you get the point.
I like to think that I have set up the scenes and visual imagery pretty well throughout the novel, but I also have the imagery in my head and it’s hard to shake that. It is hard to cast aside the pre conceived images you have in your brain and focus on nothing but the images that are drawn by your words. I’ve tried to get several people to read through my novel and give me their impression on it, but they are all very busy people. One person has been able to finish reading it, and she gave a favorable review of it, but she said that it still needed some rewrites. I honestly already knew it still needed some rewrites so that wasn’t an “on no! You just slapped my baby!” moment.
I hope to have the editing done and be ready to publish sometime between the end of August and the middle of September. I’m making good progress and I think that is a somewhat reasonable goal. I guess we shall see. I just hope people enjoy reading my novel as much as I enjoyed writing it…minus the copious amount of time spent working on edits 😉