Issues in Editing

Halfway done with the edits on Project Superhero and the one problem I’m having is finding an extended stretch of time in which to work on it. Writing, for me at least, is guerrilla warfare–a few pages here and a few pages there, quickly in and out, until the whole thing is done. I can usually pound out my requisite thousand words in about an hour on an average day, sometimes less if I’m really into the groove. Moreover, writing is a release for me and it helps me keep my head straight in all the other things I’m doing that aren’t writing.

Editing, though, is a different matter. In order to fix the inconsistencies I created during the process of writing, I need to remember what I did throughout the book, right down to the smallest detail that might provide an embarrassing point of interest to a prospective agent or editor. For example, at one point during the composition of Superhero, I have my POV character one last name, but by the time I found an opportunity to use it again, I had forgotten about it and used a different one. It was a relatively easy fix, but it makes me wonder if there are more in there like that. It could be argued that doing an outline and/or creating extensive notes would help me avoid those problems and, for a work relying more heavily on world-building and such, I’d agree. But these characters are from here and now, so taking notes, I feel, would only stifle the creative process. That’s just not the way I roll.

My two days off have been spent catching up on other duties such as some minor repairs to both our vehicles and a bit of house cleaning. My schedule does become a little more favorable to editing over the next two weeks, though, so hopefully I’ll have the whole thing nailed down by Christmas. Then, the manuscript gets handed over to my elite team of proofreaders who will catch my remaining mistakes and taunt me mercilessly for them.

In other news, I’m preparing another short story, “The Luckiest Man on Earth,” for submission as soon as I figure out where I want to send it. I have a few candidates and will probably decide over the next week or so after I make one more pass through to make sure it’s what I want it to be.

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About Lee Smiley

I write things. Maybe you'll read them.
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