It's a necessary but unfortunate task.
Lately I've been editing Fires in the Night—the third book in the Warriors of Aralan series. Editing is probably my least favorite part of being an author, because as I'm sure some of you know, editing your own work is ten times harder than editing anyone else's.
My current method for editing goes as follows: I print off the first draft so that I can read and mark it up with a red pen while someone else (namely, my mom) reads it out loud. Hearing my writing read out loud helps me to pinpoint awkward sentences or places where I could have chosen better wording.
That's the way I edit, but there's other ways:
• You can change the font it was written in to make the manuscript look different, so errors are easier to see.
• Going with the above, you can then print it off and read it in a different environment (say... a coffee shop. I hear they're great for writers). Editing it somewhere other than the place you wrote it will help you see mistakes.
• I've also heard reading it backwards helps, but I can't attest to this fact. If you're the kind of person that writes chapters out of order, this might be a really good idea.
• This is more of a tip than a way to edit, but be your own toughest critic. I'm always asking myself, "Is this necessary?" If it's just a detail that makes a sentence too wordy and in no way advances the plot, then cut it. Oftentimes whole sentences or even chapters have to go when I ask myself that simple question. No, I'm not heartless. I know how much it hurts, but in the immortal words of Nike: Just do it. Your future readers will thank you!
Now, attack that diamond-in-the-rough and make it shine!
Any questions or comments? I'd love to hear from you!
Welcome to Katelyn Buxton Books! I'm a Christian author and blogger, with a passion for writing stories that are not just enjoyable, but also lead people closer to Jesus. Feel free to look around, and enjoy your stay!