Even though you may have finished the first draft of your breakthrough story, but your writing process is far from done.
Writers tend to develop our own style of an editing process based on years of practice and I thought it was a good time to share a few of my steps.
Over the years, I have tried different techniques when it came to editing my work. Not everything has worked and at times it actually made the process harder.
I reached out to numerous writers and other resources to find new ones to try. After numerous experiments, I eventually I found some that work better for me.
These are the few steps I always take in my editing process no matter the style of story.
Let it simmer.
When the first draft is finished, we are eager to continue the process. I have found my putting the draft to the side of a few days or a week, it clears my mind and makes it easier to edit.
Look for pesky repeating words.
Writers are creatures of habit and have a tendency to stick with works for them. Sometimes it can work but when you use the same words 30 plus times. you might want to change a few.
Read it aloud.
Maybe it sounds good on paper but it comes across as a mess when you hear yourself read it. Taking this simple step has helped discover unseen errors.
Print a hard copy & get a red pen.
Personally I find this step to be the most valuable to me. I make sure to double space my copy to give me plenty of room for notes and find a nice quiet place to dissect each word. It may be hard to see a lot of red, but it will help.
One big reminder.
Just because you edit your work, it does not mean you should not hire an editor. It is not an indictment on you or your editing process.
Rather it shows you are a reasonable person who knows a second set of objective eyes is extremely helpful.