Musings, Writing

Musings from the editing cave

This week I’ve started the first round of edits for my manuscript since finding my agent. It’s been a few months since I started submitting the MS so it’s been a while since I’ve read it. Armed with my agents notes, I’ve been pulling it apart and putting it back together again. It’s a strange process – sometimes I’m struck with how good a sentence or paragraph is (I wrote this?!), others I’m embarrassed by my writing (I missed that mistake?!). It’s like a love / hate affair.

What I can tell though is that the MS is improving with each change I make, I can feel the difference already, which is exciting. Goes to show how important feedback on your work is – most of the time, I’m thinking how could I not see this is what it needed? I won’t pretend I love editing, I get most excited when I’m writing a first draft but good writing is rewriting so I’m sucking it up and delving into it.

My process has been to print the whole thing out and make notes, stick post-its and highlight things that need changing. It’s a bit old school but as I’m making structural changes, it helps to have it in front of me so I can flick forward or back and make sure it’s all joining up. And I’m now back at the laptop to type it all up. Some writers joke about heading into the editorial cave and I understand that feeling – you really have to put your head down and focus. It’s a bit like revising for exams!

On that note, I shall retreat back into my editing cave and hope that on the other side my MS will be exactly what it needs to be.




26 thoughts on “Musings from the editing cave”

  1. Good luck. I print my work out as well. I actually like editing. It’s a different feeling from the initial writing, but I like improving things and knowing they are getting better. See you when you come up for air.

  2. OH man! That sounds like no fun. But I’m glad your book is looking better and better as you put it through the fire! Did you ever visit with any sort of critique group to get their feedback on it before you started submitting it to agents? I’m starting to look up critique groups online that meet in my area, and I’m thinking about getting some of their ideas on the nonfiction narrative that I’m putting together about my time in China.

    1. Yes I had a critique partner I found through our blogs who read and critiqued the first draft and another blogger gave me feedback on the first three chapters. It’s very helpful so I say to for it!

  3. Good luck!! I work primarily as an editor, but I’ve recently submitted a short piece of writing to an editor friend of mine and am very much looking forward to being on the other side πŸ™‚

  4. I have been struggling to read “The Artist and Writer’s Yearbook”. That you are so determined and so far along the road to getting published is amazing and an enourmous tribute to you. Bows with admiration before leaving

  5. I hate when I return to a ms after so long and get the how-did-I-actually-write-this-badly reaction. Funny thing, time is.

    I’m sure Time is a lot kinder on you than it has been on me πŸ˜›

    Good luck!

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