The Editing Diaries– LET THE EDITING BEGIN!

Welcome to my series, The Editing Diaries!

In a nutshell, I’m editing my story LASER and bringing you guys along for the ride. I want you to see how my process for editing novels works (and maybe I’ll figure out my process with you). So, buckle your seatbelts, we’re going on a trip!


So, April started on Wednesday, which means that I didn’t start editing until Wednesday.

On Monday, I made a giant batch of cinnamon rolls.

BIG cinnamon rolls.
BIG cinnamon rolls.

They were delicious.

I finished writing up all the scenes of LASER and I put them on my bulletin board.

My story, reduced to 55 index cards. 38K to maybe 125 words.
My story, reduced to 55 index cards. 38K to maybe 125 words.
The board before.
The board before.
The board after.
The board after.

Finally, Wednesday showed up. Now, anyone who has been following my blog for the past few weeks probably imagines the computer firing up and then me, with my metaphorical ax, hacking out useless words and sentences left and right, and polishing sections with my Prose Polish until they gleam.

A sweet and flattering thought, readers, but no.

As you recall, Wednesday was April Fool’s Day. LASER played a vicious trick on me. Quite simply, it tricked me into thinking I was quite ready to edit, when in fact, I didn’t know how to fix any of the problems on my Macro list.

The editing that happened on Wednesday was this: I wrote a 450-word email to my dear alpha, Lily J. This email concerned one flat character by the name of Nick Elliot. The problem with him?

He was the perfect guy, but he was perfect. He was adorable and sweet, but he never really caused any conflict. Which would be great in real life, but it makes him as flat as gold leaf in a story.

The email really helped. In explaining what I wanted (actually to someone, not to just myself), I was able to figure out a couple of things and Lily helped with the rest (she had ideas and I actually already had the set up for them).

Thursday brought definite decisions about Nick and the editing began with deciding how to show what I wanted for Nick as well as starting one of two new scenes for him. But mostly, yesterday and Monday’s work was this:

This is so true that it's almost frightening.
Lots of thought.

And now, I must get back to editing. How are your writing or editing projects going?




15 thoughts on “The Editing Diaries– LET THE EDITING BEGIN!

  1. Bad, bad, LASER…behave!

    How are my writing/editing projects going? HA. They’re not. It’s called, I’m scrambling to keep up with school and Bible Quiz and choir insanity. But it’s a nice thought. 😛

  2. I’m actually pleased with how my editing is going. I figured out that it works best for me if I do all the action sentences and such in the first go through, then go back and actually edit by adding in the descriptions. Prevents things from being to sparse, or to wordy I think. 🙂
    I hope LASER starts behaving!

    • That’s great! Good plan, too. 🙂

      Thanks. Honestly, LASER has been very well behaved during it’s existence. One or two lesson-giving pranks can be forgiven. 🙂

  3. Oh, that sounds exciting! I have to applaud your way of handling the problem, though… I’ve found the best way to get past an issue is to sort of just ramble about it to somebody. Sometimes I pity those somebodies who have to read the emails (…especially when I start rambling about world building and the email is practically longer than the novel itself).

    Also, is that Hello Kitty on your board?

  4. So glad things with Nick started falling into place! Love the Sherlock pic.

    My editing is going okay. I’ve fallen into a plot hole/new character thing/”GAH WHY DO I HAVE SO MANY CHARACTERS”/bro-what-motive-do-I-give-this-man-someone-help sort of situation, but I’m hoping to clear that up soon. I’m trying out a new method of “outlining” (or whatever you call “rearranging the stuff so the pacing feels sort of right”), and I’m looking forward to seeing how it turns out.

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