Practice makes perfect!

This photo has nothing to do with today’s post topic. I just wanted to share an amazing photo of two of the loves of my life.


You’ve all been dying to know how my novel editing is going, right? (Aw, come on, pretend.)

Surely, you’re not tired of the subject; My Topics shows I’ve only written 37 blog posts about editing. But then, this is a blog about writing and editing is a major part of that. That’s why I do it again and again and …

I’m still working my way through recording the chapters and editing from the playback. I’m not editing only for rhythm in my writing this time. I’m also keeping these questions in mind:

  • Did I make the setting clear?
  • Can I make actions clearer?
  • Am I showing emotion by action as well as—or more than—by dialogue?

Fortunately, my answers to these questions haven’t resulted in too many changes … so far. My final step will be to check what I’ve not given a lot of thought to while I was writing. I think I have a fair instinct for paragraphing, but scene and chapter breaks I’m a little iffy on, so I’ll ask myself these questions:

  • Does every scene (and chapter) have a purpose and is that purpose achieved?
  • Does each scene (and chapter) start and end at the proper points?

I know several of you are also in the midst of editing. How’s it going?

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28 thoughts on “Practice makes perfect!

        1. I try to work on too many things at once and end up not doing justice to any of them. That’s why I’m shutting down everything but the novel editing for a couple days, putting on the writing blinders.


  1. Editing is going so great, I decided to put it aside and start a new book. Not that I’ve given up or anything. I just want to have something new to submit to the writing group. I figure if I ask the group: “Do you want to see another polished, re-written revision or a very rough draft of something else?” I hear answers in my head that say New New New.


    1. Well, the lure of the next book is why I’m going to severely limit my online time for the next two days and finish this edit round. I need to wrap this up and move on. After all, I could get a request for a full any day.


  2. Eh, it’s a little slow this weekend. (As in: not going anywhere at all.) That’s okay, though; I made a lot of progress on Friday and hope to get back in the groove again tomorrow. Sounds like yours is going well, good luck on the final stretch!


  3. Working my way through chapter five right now. Lately, my “editing” equals more writing, to fill out the story, and a lot of restructuring. I can’t wait to get to the point in the draft when I can review the details of each chapt more closely and maybe even read the work out loud like you.

    In fact, I wonder if I’m really “editing” at all. Maybe I’m still in the process of finishing my first draft? Specifics, specifics….

    Either way, I’m still at it.


    1. Christi, though this was meant to be a last round edit, I’ve discovered a need for two added scenes … and I hope I don’t find more. It’s hard to get back into character when you’ve been out of that mode for a while. No time to waste now, so it’s all editing all the time until I get this done.

      Do what you have to do, I know you’ll end up with a winner.


  4. I’m working at something brand new but editing my way though, which is typical for me. You’re right about editing be such a big part of writing, but wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could get it all right the first time….What a dream that would be!

    The photo is awesome!


    1. I edit as I write too … the “rules” be damned! 🙂 And I certainly will not make a single mistake as I write the next one … no editing necessary. (I crack myself up.)


  5. My editing is sucking right now and going very slow. –You asked 🙂
    But I refuse to start a new project until I have made serious progress on this ms.

    My attention is drawn to the last two on your list.
    Does every scene (and chapter) have a purpose and is that purpose achieved?

    Does each scene (and chapter) start and end at the proper points?


  6. I can’t ever decide which scene should end a chapter, or how many scenes should be in a chapter, or if a scene belongs in a particular chapter, or ….

    Well, I used to write IN chapters, instead of in scenes. When I learned the “right” way to break a story into scenes things got SOOOOO much more confusing.

    *Sigh* This is why I don’t write anymore.


  7. I’ve been in first draft mode, but will be editing a short story next weekend. Thanks for a great check list, especially this one: “Am I showing emotion by action as well as—or more than—by dialogue?”


    1. That’s part of the show not tell thing, which I’m generally fairly good at, but sometimes I slip. Another aspect of this, which is something I learned from my critique partner Kasie, is that when you show the reader how your character feels, the reader will feel it too.


  8. My editing plan is on hiatus and I’m rather tempted to join it.

    Spring is around the corner in Florida and there are so many beautiful distractions preparing to blossom. This time of year I find it increasingly difficult to focus on much of anything outside the wonder of the natural world around me.


    1. I feel like I missed all of spring last year because I stayed glued to this keyboard. I plan not to repeat that this year. I’ve done some winter cleanup and the first rose pruning, and I have loads more gardening waiting for me right now, but I’m ignoring it for a few more days while I finish this edit. I simply must. You however, should follow your own must. 🙂


  9. Thanks for dropping in at my blog, Linda. I see we have a few things in common (editing, among others!) so I’ll have to come back and check things out periodically. (In the meantime, I’m editing). 🙂


  10. Fab picture — just beautiful (although it’s giving me a little sense of vertigo, as they look like they’re about to fall off the edge of the world).

    Your editing process is thorough, organized and specific; I’m sure it will yield a best-selling manuscript.


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