Grammar and Crutch Words and Rewrites, O My!
Happy Monday! I'm so glad you're here! I hope everyone's 2020 is starting off right. I feel like my new planners are helping me to be more productive. Are you trying anything new to improve this year? I'd love to hear about things y'all are trying.
“Edit your manuscript until your fingers bleed and you have memorized every last word. Then, when you are certain you are on the verge of insanity...edit one more time!”
― CK Webb
“While writing is like a joyful release, editing is a prison where the bars are my former intentions and the abusive warden my own neuroticism.”
― Tiffany Madison
Today, I want to talk about Editing. Exciting, huh? Well, more specifically...Why is this editing process taking so long???? Some of you have been a part of this journey with me for quite a while. You were with me while I was still writing my first draft of my first book. If you've asked yourself, "What's taking her so long to get published?" Don't worry, you aren't the first. Those who are close to me haven't hesitated to ask, "When am I going to get to read your book?" I usually say, "Nobody wants you to read my book more than me, but its not ready yet." (Me or I? Its or It's? Arghhh!)
When I finished writing the first draft, I thought self-editing would be a breeze. Ha! Almost 2 years later, I'm still editing. What have I learned? I'm hiring an editor for the rest of my books! Seriously. I still have to finish this first one, though. Even hiring an editor isn't as easy as it sounds, though. Here's a Q&A I had with an Editor in a FB group I'm in.
Me: I've finished the first draft of my second novel. I know I want to use an editor with this book, because the process has/is taking so long with my first novel. I'm not sure how "perfect" I need to get my manuscript before I send it to an editor, though. Can you tell me what you expect from manuscripts sent to you? Her: Are you asking how good it has to be to send it to a freelance editor or how good it needs to be for a publisher? Me: For the editor Her: For a developmental editor, it has to be a book. I know that sounds weird, but you’d be surprised. For a copy editor, the structure has to be in place and you’re just looking for helping making it sound right. For a proofreader, you have everything good to go but the picky grammar. If you need help getting your arms around the whole project, try a writing coach. For a publisher it needs to be your A work.
Part of my problem is I keep learning new things about how to be a better writer. As I learn more and more, of course I have to go back and redo, rewrite and rework my manuscript. Grammar, Crutch Words and Rewrites, O My! It doesn't seem to end.
I've come to terms with the fact that this first novel is my practice novel. I'm not giving up, though, because I believe in my story. I love my characters and settings. I'll press on as long as it takes, unless the Lord changes my direction. I want to keep improving for myself as well as you. Hopefully, each novel will take less and less editing to make it publication ready, but what the publication world wants changes as the times change, so who knows.
This is a journey. It takes time and more time. When I get to the end of my road, I want to be better than when I started. I want my writing to improve with each new novel I write. I believe God wants us to give Him our best. Not because we will earn any favor by doing that, but because He wants us to be good stewards of what He's given us, whether that's an ability to crunch numbers, build houses, raise children or write stories. He deserves our best. The end of my journey is Heaven, but until then I'll "keep on keeping on" as my great grandma used to say.
I want to give you my best, too. When my novel is published, I want you to enjoy it and when the next one comes out, maybe you'll enjoy that one a little more. That's how everything is, isn't it? A learning process, a growing process...a journey. What journey are you on? Don't stand there stagnant. Press on and end better than you started.
May God bless you and your family on your journey with faith, hope and love, in Jesus' Name.
Some of you may remember my guest on a past blog post, Author Jodie Wolfe. She is planning to come back to do a guest blog post on February 24, 2020 to tell you about her new book, Taming Julia, which officially releases on February 14, 2020. I also have the honor of reading a prerelease copy for review. I am super excited for her and that she will be joining us again. Please make sure to come back for that post and share, share, share it! It would mean so much to me and her I know.