Here I go again: How I edit my stories

Whenever I manage to finish writing a story, I get to rediscover that writing the book was the easy part. Now I’m about to journey through the not-so-great joys of editing.

To alleviate this I watch a lot of youtube videos on the subject. There are quite a few people who go through the different types of editing. But whenever I edit, it’s a free-for-all. The line edits are forced to be with the proofreading and don’t get me started on the structural editing. It’s all one big party where I’m ripping out my fingernails because I hate parties.

My word documents all end up either covered in red (at least first to fourth drafts) or minimally wounded by the time I’m ready for it be self-published (aka getting sick of it). As revisions go on it does get quicker/easier, both because I’m getting better at killing my darlings and increasingly more confident in my editing abilities.

To people out there who think that editing is something daunting like climbing a mountain when you’ve never done such a thing, then do not fret. You don’t experience, you just need persistence. Afterall you just finished writing a manuscript. That’s something a lot of people never manage to do. Hooray!

 

20 Days of blog posts: Day 16

Wednesday, 15 November, ’17

I did nothing but edit Save One for 11 hours today. I started at 8am and finished at 9pm. It has been one of the most productive days in a long while. All up I only did about 30-40 pages. I finished the third draft 🙂

There were times when I was getting distracted by the internet, but I was motivated by the thought of disappointment. It’s a massive motivation, don’t knock it until you’ve imagined yourselves failing. I’m serious.

Let the eighth month begin

Currently, I’m working on more projects than I have ever done before (I gotta reach that goal of 10 books by 30). There are moments that stretch longer than they should, where I feel overwhelmed by what I’m doing. I have all these stories in my head that are not written down and that is what gets to me. I can only do one thing at a time!

But then I calm down knowing that there is nothing I can really do about it. Stressing means no work as opposed to some and as long as I keep notes of what I want to happen in my future stories then it’s going to be all ok.

But once I have my first draft down it becomes a wonderful feeling that a story is becoming whole. Then the rest of the work begins. Revising, editing, modifying, the time-sucking soul-destroying torture process that is another draft, whatever you want to call it beings. But that can be for another day as I have another story to word vomit all over my computer.

What are your writing goals?

I have a goal of writing 10 books by the age of 30. That means I have to publish 6 more in the next 30 months, or a new book every 5 months. At the moment I have The Things We Do in its ?fourth? draft (strangely I haven’t been keeping that much of a record). The first draft of Jump Start is done, I’m halfway through two more novellas (Beyond this Little Moon of Ours and yet-to-be-titled novella) and I have a few other incomplete dormant stories sleeping on my USB.

I’m not one to be motivated by self-imposed deadlines. In fact, I freeze up in fear and have a miniature freakout, despite having gone through university and gotten me a BA and Postgrad Diploma. I like to go my own pace and that pace can be all over the place. Nothing for days and then a few thousand words in one sitting.

What I have is what I now consider a short-term goal (I know, I now consider myself getting old). I’m just starting to get into my groove writing and when I hit thirty I do not know what to expect. I hope I will have reached my goal. I’m certainly going to aim for it. But I wonder how much of my life will be the same or different.

What about you? What are your short and long-term writing goals?