When it’s written

This year I am writing a novel.

I don’t know much about editing but eventually this journey is going to reach that stage! I am thinking that some initial things to look for when I start editing are:

  1. Character consistency
  2. Tense – I had initial found myself writing in the past tense but decided that present tense works better
  3. Spelling and grammar
  4. Plot flaws and loose ends
  5. Being overly wordy
  6. Hmm, what else??
  7. Flow

Some tips that other writers have shared:

  1. Shelf it for a bit so it can be looked at with fresh eyes
  2. Read it out loud
  3. At some point do a line by line edit
  4. An edit on a paper draft. Do you edit on a paper draft or on screen?

My idea going into editing is basically re-read, re-read, and re-read!

Do you have any editing tips to share”

By Shari Marshall – 2021

8 thoughts on “When it’s written

  1. I have an odd recommendation but it works for me. I do what you’ve listed but I’ll also use electronic screens in an unexpected way. When ready for an edit sweep, I open two screens.
    1st) has the original editable draft
    2nd) has a published (rendered) but undistributed version displayed in an overly large font so it looks very different than the editable version I’ve seen dozens of times.
    Of course I read the rendered version but make corrections in the editable one and you will be surprised how many odd things suddenly pop out at you leaving you wondering who really wrote this thing.
    Strange but true, at least for me.
    Don’t forget to save often. 😏

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  2. Thank you for sharing as you go! I’ve never written a novel so I do not have any advice on what I would do for this process.
    I do have a good friend who writes romance/historical some of them time travels novels and she asked me once if I wanted to be a beta reader. I thought that was interesting, and I only did this one time. (It was a novel that had a lot of horsey stuff and she’s a horse back rider herself but wanted some feedback). I know she writes so many novels she has an editor that she sends her work too! She’s always talking about deadlines and other things, and she is very prolific. It is fun to follow along in ones process! Good luck ❤️

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    1. I am almost read to start giving my husband chapters to read for me as a first time set of eyes on it that aren’t mine. It will be interesting to see what he finds. I don’t think I will give him the title of “beta reader” or anything but I do plan to engage some official beta readers at some point. Thanks for stopping in Diana.

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  3. Hi Shari, Kudos to you for setting a goal to write a novel. In our Weekend Coffee Share blogging community, there are a few writers and published authors (e.g. Trent, Antoinette, Pam, Jo, and more). It may be a good idea to visit their blogs and connect with them.

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