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Monday, July 19, 2010

Editing Tips

I've been working on edits for the past week and I've come across a nice routine for keeping me on track.

When my editor sends me changes, she sends them in parts. It was the first time anyone had ever done that with me and I wasn't sure if I liked it until I started working on it.

Sending back the manuscript in pieces has kept me focused on one segment at a time. If you get back 400 pages in one shot it's easy to feel overwhelmed. But 100 page segments feels more humane.

One thing I did this go round, which you can do regardless if it's an editor or a critique partner, is make a duplicate copy with the tracked changes accepted and then reading it again.

By creating a duplicate copy without all the red marks it becomes less distracting. I found I could more easily polish the narrative and edit with fresher eyes.

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Aren't you all surprised I did an actual writing post today? LOL.

***
And did you hear about that silly quiz that told you what famous author's work your writing resembles?

I could have sworn that quiz made the rounds last year, but for whatever reason it went viral this year. The algorithm is keyword based so you got all kinds of loopy answers. It has nothing to do with your writing style.

Here is the Huffington Post article out to burst your bubble.
Such a shame. Now you can't go around flaunting your Kafka.

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Lastly...

Poison ivy is getting better. I tried Stacy's (Form and Funktion) over-the-counter remedy of Technu and it seemed to work pretty well.


24 comments:

Dru said...

I'm glad that editing is going smoothly for you and you found a good routine.

Have a good Monday.

Liz Fichera said...

Seems like everyone last week was posting something on Twitter or Facebook about their writing style and that quiz. Wonder what will go viral this week?

Maria Zannini said...

Dru:

Thanks, Dru. Hope your days are cooling down a little. Looks like the heat wave is hitting the west coast now.

Maria Zannini said...

Liz:

LOL. I know. People are always latching on to something. What they need to understand is that these quizzes are meant as entertainment, not affirmation.

Angela said...

This is the first I've heard of the quiz. I have to laugh though, especially if there were folks taking the quiz to heart...well, not laugh at the actual folks, but at the idea.

Maria Zannini said...

Angela: Some of these quizzes are really fun, but I usually avoid them.

They're meant to stroke the ego. I can do that myself. LOL!

Kaz Augustin said...

Yep okay, I succumbed. But, then again, you know my ego is the size of a small ballroom! But the results were enough to burst THAT bubble. lol

First-person prose: Dan Brown. Third-person: JRR Tolkien. Bleech! I don't like *either* of those writers. Why not just stab me through the heart, it'd be a lot less painful! Off to Huff to regain Teh Ego.

Maria Zannini said...

S'okay, Kaz. I'll still respect you in the morning. :grin:

Jennifer Shirk said...

I like the editing in pieces thing. My editor with Avalon kind of did that. She gave me the story edits first then a month or so later I got the minor grammar and story consistency things. It was less overwhelming.

Maria Zannini said...

Jennifer: I have to admit, doing this way is far less stressful. I feel I catch more this way too.

Sherri said...

I like the idea of editing in pieces...have to try that. Maybe break the monster down by acts, yeah, like that idea *g*

LOL, I've seen that quiz. Haven't tried it but it could be fun.

Maria Zannini said...

Sherri: I've always been an all or nothing kind of editor, but this new method has changed my mind. It's so much more manageable now.

barbaraannwright said...

I reserve the right to flaunt my Kafka if I want to, no matter how dirty that sounds.

KarenG said...

I followed you from Jayne's blog. Any friend of hers is a friend of mine!

Sherri said...

Okay...I'm OFFICIALLY following you, LOL, even though I check in here almost daily.

Maria Zannini said...

Barbara: You've been flaunting your Kafka before it was cool. LOL.

Maria Zannini said...

KarenG:

Welcome Karen! I'll stop over at your blog in a minute.

I'm so glad to meet you!

Maria Zannini said...

Sherri:

Ref: I'm OFFICIALLY following you

Oh good. I'll email you the secret handshake. :)

Tia Nevitt said...

Regarding:

"One thing I did this go round, which you can do regardless if it's an editor or a critique partner, is make a duplicate copy with the tracked changes accepted and then reading it again."

Word has a way to do this! You select the "Final without markup" view in the Review ribbon/taskbar. Word will then show the document without any of the comments and with the latest edits, just as if you had accepted them. However, the revisions are there, and will show up again when you select "Final with markup".

Love, your friendly certified Word expert.

Maria Zannini said...

Tia: I should've asked you first.

Thanks, Tia!

Jayne said...

I am glad your editing (and polishing!) is going well! And KarenG above is just lovely. Her blog is a treasure!

Maria Zannini said...

Jayne: I was glad to meet Karen. I really enjoyed her blog--and yours.

I put in a word about your contest in Wednesday morning's post. (your afternoon, I imagine)

DEZMOND said...

Hey, Maria, just wanted to tell you that TOUCH OF FIRE sounds like a great novel and that it has an amazing book cover! Keep up the good work ;)

catie james said...

LOL Thank gawd you provided that info on the writing style quiz. I was supremely disappointed to discover my writing most closely matched with that of Dan Brown. Granted no one can deny the man's popularity, but he is truly one of my least favorite authors. I couldn't even get five pages into The Da Vinci Code.