The Joys of Editing

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I may be an odd ball but I just have to admit. I love editing. I love it almost as much as I love writing. I love editing my own work especially, it gets my creative juices flowing even more so than before, about great new ideas and character development as I plug away at making what I am working as perfect as I can get it. It makes me what to write more and more and more. I usually edit a lot slower than I write of course, rereading the same paragraph sometimes a hundred times or more just to get the wording to say exactly what I want it to say. I am currently editing my Work In Progress and I was really good about waiting until I had 36 page (double spaces so say what you will) before even beginning to edit and man was that a challenge. I did it mostly because I had hit a road block in my writing. I mean I was chugging along writing the story per the detailed outline I made but the passion just was not there to stay up to the late hours of the night, needing to finish the next scene as I had been before. I find even though I have only really edited the first few pages (roughly on the 4th page as I write this blog) I find my passion growing again. The fire in my gut of inspiration and the overwhelming need to just write and write all day is coming back upon me. (Thank you muse!)

I know some writers say you should not edit until the very end of writing your first draft, because it is just that the first draft. It is going to be rough, it is going to be edgy it is going to be honestly somewhat bad. And I do get that, and that is why I was pushing myself to wait to edit for so long, but with my writing style and how my inspiration works I see something I wrote days or weeks ago again and it is witty and perfect and go AHA! I can do this. I am a good writer, and it sparks more confidence in myself and makes me want to continue.

So I guess what I am saying is that it is okay to stop and edit. It is okay to sit back and admire your own work and add upon it. I think for me editing helps me remember small details to add in the story later. Example, yesterday I was editing the very first page of my current project and I was reminded that I needed to put in why she was even away from her horse in the forest to begin with. Why was she traipsing alone in a dark forest without even the companion of her horse. The reader does not know and if it made me think of the question I am sure some future reader (if I only get so lucky) would probably ask the same question. It makes sure that you cover your loose ends before you have so many loose ends that your book isn’t flushed out, doesn’t have the round-ness of completion.

Well these are my thoughts, I would love to hear what you all have to say. So until next time, have a wonderful day!

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7 responses »

  1. I think you are absolutely right! I’ve been doing that quite frequently with my WIP. Anytime I’m bored or stuck, I just reread what I’ve written so far. I can spend leisurely hours just changing things around, adding things in, and taking things out. I just hope I’m making it better and not worse! It seems like most of the time I am adding, and I hope I’m not becoming too wordy overall. But rereading ALWAYS helps me get back on track. It helps me think of where to go next, what to tie up, what to foreshadow, etc. Everyone has their own style, and if that works for you, I say keep it up! Better than sitting and staring and doing nothing.

    • thank you for stopping by and your comment! i am so glad I am not alone! And I love reading my own work, (and if you don’t love it who will) and I am the same way, on average i add at least 50 words per page I edit! I too sometimes wonder if I get too wordy but it always seems to make the picture clearer when I go back and reread it.

      Again thank you for stopping by! I really appreciated what you had to say!

  2. Interesting post!! I have been pushing through my novel and not allowing myself to edit (though sometimes this is really difficult!) and it’s actually good to hear that maybe it’s not so terrible to edit it while you’re still working on it. And if it re-sparks your interest in your story and makes you want to continue, then it’s not only not a bad thing… it’s a great thing. That sentence was awkward, but I hope it made sense. 🙂

    Anyway, thanks for sharing your perspective! I’ve been hitting a bit of a rough spot in my story, and I think I might try this out.

    • Sorry it took me so long to reply! Thank you for stopping by and commenting again! I definitely think it is okay to stop and edit but I also know that if you stop and edit every page you probably won’t get very far in creating your story. My problem is because I edit along the way it take me a lot longer for me to write up a complete novel or story. But the other edge of the sword is sometimes if I don’t edit then it never gets finished. I think it just all depends on your writing style.

      Happy writings! and have a great day!

  3. Wow, that’s totally me. I almost never write to the very end before I start editing my work—unless it’s a single page document, I just can’t hold out that long! 😀 In the case of my last book (a 200 page fiction-like non fiction) I started editing the first chapter while I was writing chapter two, and keep going like that all the way to the end. And then I re-edited the whole thing twice. The finished product was sooo much better than the original (whatever that was, because it was always being editing) and now I’ve finally gotten all those “loose ends” tied and tucked in …nicely ….
    Great post, I love it!

  4. I have to just throw up that first draft out of me. And, yes, it’s as ugly as this reads. If I go back and look over everything, I doubt myself, want to torture and murder my novel, and I taunt my bad writing in my head.

    So. I’ll go over the second draft when if I do all of those things (except for delete the MS) I won’t have to worry about ruining my creativity because it’s already out there!

    P.S. I too slave over one sentence, one paragraph for way too long, also.

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