Friday, May 15, 2020

Editing – A Necessary Evil


Welcome to our group blog. This May our Group Blog is on editing. All books go through multiple edits. What have you learned are your problems, and what irks you about editing?

We do go through many edits. The first few are our own edits before we send anything off. After the first draft we edit for sentence structure, spelling, grammar, character development, interior and exterior conflict, plot, red herrings and probably a lot more. Then we edit again. Then off to our editors, revisions and back for more editing. I think all of us want the best polished novel possible for our readers.
What are my problems? Ah, so many challenges. I tend to use passive voices – was – a lot. I need to use words that are more active and vivid.  As well I use crutch words like smiled, glared, stared, and words like ‘just’ and ‘that’. I also have some punctuation issues, like where to put the comma.
Editing takes time and it’s technical and not creative. working with your muse, but it’s a necessary evil for a well-written story.

I think what irks me about editing is that no matter how many edits you do, or how many people edit it or look at it, when you read the final published copy – there’s always an error – which someone immediately points out. Sigh…

I’m looking forward to seeing what our other authors have to say about editing and what irks them.
Dr. Bob Rich https://wp.me/p3Xihq-1UN
       Rhobin L Courtright ttp://www.rhobincourtright.com

12 comments:

  1. Hi Beverley, I, too, have problems with commas and possibly the more so as I get older. I like editing, though. At least the first time through... Anne

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    1. Thanks, Anne. How about the second and third edit? :)

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  2. Passive voice is one of my failings, too. To be totally honest, I actually speak that way and always have. Unusual, but I'll say things like, "Don't be doing that." instead of don't do that or "I was just thinking..." instead of I think. I get called out on it all the time. One of these days I'll create a character who talks like I do and I can just run with it (oops, just used the word just.) Commas seem to be another issue entirely - there's the old school and the newer more flexible uses. I never seem to get it right so thank God for my editor.

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    1. Nice to see someone who uses "just" besides me. Even when I reread or edit I sometimes leave "just" in, because it seems to add "just" the right amount of emphasis. And I think a character who talked in the passive voice would be fun to write.

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  3. You absolutely correct on those published mistakes! Commas, so simple, so difficult! And usage seems to change. I'd like to get a hold of the 'they' who seems to make these grammar changes.

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    1. Thanks, Rhobin and you're so right on the changes that keep occurring, especially with commas. Spellcheck says one thing, one editor like it another way and another says don't need it. Sigh...

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  4. Looks like I can be of service to you ladies. Please read my comma tips at https://wp.me/p3Xihq-1nr

    :)
    Bob

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    1. Off to check that out, Bob. Any help greatly appreciated.

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  5. Commas. I love Oxford commas. But, alas, editors often do not :(. Good post.

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  6. Oh, that cheeky comma. It catches lots of writers out. My own feeling is that if there are too many commas in a sentence, the sentence can be split and made sharper. The days of long Dickensian sentences are over.

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  7. Good point, Victoria. Thanks for sharing.

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