Friday, November 4, 2016

THE JOYS OF EDITING--SLASHING, BURNING, CRYING...

Hi Everyone,

I hope your week is going well. Today, I'm working on the editing my next novel.  The book is finally finished, The End sitting proudly on the last page. Now the fun begins. Re-writes.



Rewrites are grueling and I have to be very honest with myself. As I cut and burn the horrid words, sentences, paragraphs and pages, my Doubt Monster becomes very loud. It's hard tearing your work to pieces. I can't add doubting myself into the mix. I wish I had a tool to keep the doubt lid shut tight, but the best I can do is shake those negative thoughts out of my head and move on.

I thought I would share my editing process. Since I'm a very visual person, I read over every paragraph with the computer's highlight pen. 
My key:

Orange=I don't like this
Red: UCK! What was I thinking. Delete or fix. 
Blue: Not sure how to fix this. [Most likely, the blue will wait for the next review.]


“Em, get out. Now.” His voice echoed with pain.     

[Echo is my favorite word in this story. I have to find another way to say this.] 
“I’m not leaving you.” She scanned the warehouse. “I brought the journals, you deranged prick. Now let him go.”
Damn it, Em. Go.”
Before she could respond, a deafening blast ricocheted off the walls and a bullet sliced through the links of the chain on Alec’s right hand. She spread her arms out to protect him. “What the hell do you want?”

“Duck.” 
The high pitch male voice over the intercom system held a hint of laughter. YUK. RW Three earsplitting rifle shots took out the remaining chains and Alec fell forward into her arms. 


Three orange blocks in two sentences is common. Remember, slow, gueling...

His weight knocked her backward, but she steadied her stance, wrapping both arms around him until he found his balance.
Emersyn eased back so the wool of her coat didn’t scratch his burns. She needed him close, ached to feel his heartbeat. He shivered to the bone, but he was alive.
With one arm holding her tight, Alec lifted her chin. “Why don’t you ever listen?”

 “Because you ask the impossible.” Her lips brushed the soft skin at his neck right below his left ear.
~~~ 

So... this is how it now reads.

“Em, get out. Now.” 
His voice, hoarse, shaky broke her heart. 
“I’m not leaving you.” She scanned the warehouse. Where was he? “I have the journals, you deranged prick. Now let him go.”
“Damn it, Em. Go. Now!”
Before she could respond, a deafening blast ricocheted off the walls and a bullet sliced through the links a foot above Alec’s right hand. Emersyn spread her arms out, covering Alec's body. “What the hell do you want?”
“Duck.” The high pitched male voice over the intercom chuckled. 
Three earsplitting rifle shots took out the remaining chains and Alec stumbled into her arms. His weight knocked her backward, but she steadied her stance, wrapping both arms around him until he found his balance.
His right arm circled her waist as his free hand cupped her chin. “Why don’t you ever listen?”
 “Because you ask the impossible.” 
~~~


The first editing pass has me reading through each chapter at least three times. After I make the corrections, I listen to the whole chapter with NaturalReader. My ear catches typos or confusing phasing much better than my eyes. I won't send this novel off to my publisher without at least three complete rewrites. 
...AND then my wonderful editor rips it to shreds.

Well, that is how I spent my afternoon, one grueling paragraph at a time. If anyone has any questions for me, please ask away in the comment section below. If you can't get that to work, post a comment on my author Facebook page or send me an Email here.  

Back to editing...

Hugs to all,

Nancy C. Weeks

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