Tuesday, January 15, 2019

How Do You Edit?


How do you edit, writer? 

This past round of edits, I printed out my manuscript and red-lined it over a 2 week period. This was perfect for traveling—I loved having a tangible thing to pick up and work on when I had a chance.

When I got home, I frantically put it into the computer to make a deadline.

The thing is, I didn’t account for the ADDITIONAL editing that goes into doing this. I hit the deadline, but my head was spinning, and I probably know my manuscript word for word now!

While it wasn’t completely ideal at moments, I still stand by handwritten editing at some point in the process. It truly connects you to your story in a different way than typing does—and gives you a break from screen time!

If you’d like to try handwritten edits, here are some tips:
1. Set aside extra time for the EXTRA editing that goes into transferring to digital (unless you are an expert at turning your internal editor off while you type in the edits—I am not!)

2. Break up the transfer into acts. Paper edit the first act then transfer into the computer. Then go to the next act. This might be less daunting than trying to get them all in as a deadline creeps up.

3. Enjoy the journey. I loved sitting with pen in hand and changing things up. I only got frantic when I realized how much I had changed! Ha! But, the process is life giving, and in the end, you have a thoroughly edited manuscript to send off!
So, do you prefer editing on paper or screen?

6 comments:

kaybee said...

Hi Angie, good points. I'm old-school, mostly because I started writing before personal computers were available. I write on the screen, unless I'm really stuck and the words aren't flowing, then it's the yellow legal pad. But I line-edit on paper. It's easier to "see" mistakes, and by then I'm tired of sitting at a desk. I'll take a sheaf of paper to a library or coffee shop, and go at it with a red Pilot G2 pen. It comes down to whatever works for you, doesn't it?
Kathy Bailey

Angie Dicken said...

Yes, Kathy! I like the change of pace and scenery when I am at the editing stage. I agree, I see mistakes more clearly. I'll have to check out a Pilot G2 pen!

kaybee said...

Ange, Pilot G2 is To Die For. Smooth action, rolls on nice, makes anyone's handwriting look better. Am also obsessed with yellow legal pads and color-coded index cards. I'm pathetic. Love computers but they have greatly reduced my trips to the office supply store.

Melissa Henderson said...

I edit on my computer. :-)

Unknown said...

Hi, my editing is a several stage process. The first is to print off the document/manuscript in double spacing to allow more room for edits/notes and then make these direct changes to the existing document (I've managed to stop myself from editing the edits as they're put back in-mostly).

Once they're in and saved, I reprint the document and then also use the horrible text to speech while following with the written document, this helps me pick up on stupid errors that we have a tendancy to miss (you know the ones, like the at the end of one line and also at the beginning of the next.) Again, I'll highlight the errors but not make any changes until I get through to the end as the errors are usually fewer.

Finally, a read through with my wife, as she picks up things that I have missed or my mind has glossed over.

The strange thing is, when I am editing/proofreading other people's work, it is rare that I miss mistakes that seem to escape me when I am checking my own - I can only put this down to the familiarity of the work.

Danal Gerimon said...

Being a writer my self at Content Writing.Am firmly in favor of your thoughts and opinions.