Monday, February 17, 2014

Edits- Structure vs Shine

As everyone knows at this point, I’m editing a novel. You might have gotten a few clues from how I keep whining about it. Since it’s already a trend I don’t feel comfortable changing it up at this point. Thus I’ll be whining from here to eternity, or at least until it’s done.

I had a lot of really big plans when I started off. Previously I’ve only ever done cosmetic edits. The one major edit that I tried totally wrecked the novel by not maintaining the tone and humor of the 1st draft. I really didn’t want to make that mistake again. I was going to do spruce up the language, cut down the chaff scenes, and just in general shine it up.  Plus I would make tone clearer instead of working against it.

Turns out it didn’t need a coat of shine. That would be like doing a facelift on a patient with a leg coming out of her ear. As I went  through the 1st draft I kept thinking ‘This should not happen here. It should happen a lot earlier’. So reorganizing became the name of the day. Plus I had a lot of interesting stuff happen off screen. That’s really silly considering it was more interesting then what we happening onscreen! I’ve decided to call this stage a structural edit. Things are getting moved around and a lot of new content is being written.

Recently I came across a scene that made my editing fingers itch. It was bloated, over done, and just begging to get fixed. I looked at my timer and the list of things I needed to do that day and let it go after making sure it was internally consistent. *sigh*. Now multiply that by a couple of hundred and that’s what I’m looking at in the future.

So it’s not quite going how I expected it, but I’m pretty sure that’s okay. At least I know what I’m doing in my next draft! Until next time friends.

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