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Thread: Editing

  1. #1
    Rebecca D\'Souza
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    Editing

    Sorry, another question. Should I edit each chapter as I finish it, or leave it and come back to it after I have done a few. I seem to re-read what I have done almost each time I start writing again, and always end up changing things. I wonder if I will over-edit in the long run? Hope its not too much of a silly question!



  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Rebecca, do whatever works for you. Some writers prefer not to edit too finely until the whole book is in good shape story wise simply because often whole scenes are cut or changed and you'll have wasted time on them.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Keith .'s Avatar
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    What CK said. Many instructors say to blow out the first draft just to get it down but I was never comfortable doing that. Now I place a marker where I start each day. When I begin the next session, I'll go back to that marker and do a light edit for content before erasing that marker and placing another where I begin again. This cleans things up a bit and, more importantly for me, gets me back into the same grove I finished with before. Experiment and see what works for you. Luck.
    ________________________________________________

    People seldom do what they believe in. They do what is convenient, then repent.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    You don't have to be sorry about asking questions. That's what we do here. Ask away.

    Just write the book and stop worrying so much. You'll find your own rhythm.

  5. #5
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    If it helps, Rebecca, Larry Niven once told me that he edits as he goes, and he has a number of best-sellers under his belt.

  6. #6
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    I've tried it both ways. I like the "get the story down first and then go back and edit" way better. I got so obsessed with editing "as I went" that it took me 10 times longer to get a first draft completed. And...it was still a first draft.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Zoe Saadia's Avatar
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    I do a rough editing after each chapter is done. I don't feel comfortable with just a raw material
    (not that it means the first (and the second and the third and so on) draft is anywhere near passable in the end <insert some sort of a sweating smiley> lol)

  8. #8
    Rebecca D\'Souza
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    Thanks everyone. I think I may do a quick re-read of each chapter as I go, but try not to edit too much. I edited the last chapter so much in the end I almost didn't recognize it, and wanted to undo all the efforts of the night before. Just quickly. At what point do you get someone else to read it? Wait til you have done a fair chunk or chapter by chapter? Oh and just one person? or multiple people??

  9. #9
    Belinda T.
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    Do what feels natural to you. I've edited some of my chapters to the point where they're a few paras and then I insert new material which I think may enhance the plot or keep a reader enthralled without too much verbiage.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    Rebecca,

    These sorts of questions don't really have answers. Some writers use critiques and readers chapter by chapter even during first drafts. Others wait until their work is done and polished. It really depends on what helps you produce your best effort. And it's not static. What may work for one project doesn't work as well for another.

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