Friday, February 26, 2010

is it too soon?

So Finding Me has officially started. I have been toying around with different ideas for the book I want to focus on, not solely but at least give it a good go. Get my writing focused into one piece and in the end each piece will flow a little easier. Now since I am trying to soak up as much information in the wonderful world of writing I figured it is only right to ask some of my fellow blogger friends! You are very knowledgeable and since I am not, I guess you could say I'm being schooled.

Editing as been on the mind, not because I am in the process of beginning, I have only just begun the novel itself, piecing together the best parts that I have written. It normally starts as a cluster and works itself out. I was wondering however what part of your novel do you begin editing? I know everyone is different, but I would love a feel of what everyone does. Do you stop your book before hand, let it rest a day or two and then begin, or do you start that evening after you've finished your draft... a chapter... two chapters?

I know that once I get closer editing will be something that I do need to focus on, so I figured why not have the information stored up in my brain, something to work towards. I have also read that crit groups are great, and I think it will be nice to break out of my shell and show people (caring people) my work. I took the plunge to start this blog and it has turned out to be a fabulous experience, yes this is via the worldwide web, but this is also a step by step process!

Side note - since I have several trips this year I have cut costs for extras however my husband told me that when I reach 300 followers(because he's so sweet and think I will) I will be giving away a giftcard, or possibly a book, depends what is currently coming out!!! Just thought I'd give you exciting news!

Also Guinevere from This is Not My Day Job is hosting a fantastic contest for her 101followers so check it out here!!!!

I've joined twitter as well, so please add me since I am still a bit technically challenged (jenunedited is my tweet thingy....)

17 comments:

Sarah said...

I'm near the end of my novel but I've edited and reedited it so many times I've lost count. I wish I could stop. Seriously. The longer you can hold off editing, probably the better. But that's not really how I work. I'm constantly editing.

Amanda said...

In general, I'm an edit-as-you-go sort of writer. Not that everything has to be perfect, but I write slowly, word-by-word, making sure they mostly feel right as I write. When I get to the end of the book, I do a quick read through for anything obviously missing, then put it aside for at least six weeks before I look at it again. Because I do a slow, edit-as-I-go draft the first time, I don't have rewrite the mss, just revise. Of course, that's only true because I've written enough novels now not to need to rewrite - in the beginning I definitely needed to rewrite once I'd gotten more experience.

In November I participated in NaNo which required fast writing without editing as I went. That was an interesting experience. I wrote 60k words in 9 days, and later had to go back and rewrite the entire last third of the book because I didn't like where it went. Other than that, though, because I had enough experience I (thank goodness) didn't have to rewrite the whole book. With 4 revision passes, I've gotten it to query-ready state (as of yesterday).

Either technique works, so you should decide what works for you. If editing as you go inhibits you from finishing, then wait to edit until after you're done. If it doesn't, it makes a much cleaner mss to work with at the end.

Danyelle said...

I never edit until after the story is written. After I finish, I let it sit for a few weeks, and then go back with fresh eyes. The first edit is usually grammatical fixes and checking for awkward phrasing. Then I rinse and repeat. Send off to betas for their fresh eyes. And then repeat. :)

Christine Danek said...

I am just starting the revising process and I am super scared and excited so I will be back to see your progress. I am learning too :)

Karen Amanda Hooper said...

I can't help but edit as I go. I reread a scene and HAVE to fix the flaws I see. Plus, I keep changing things that affect what I've already written so I have to go back and revise. It's a hodgepodge process. Just roll with it. :)

Jody Hedlund said...

Hi Jen,

There are definitely different levels of editing. I tend to do a big picture edit in my first read-through (after I complete my novel). Then I go back through and do a line-edit for smaller things. But I would definitely say you need to get an objective view point after you do your own editing and I think a crit group would be a great place to start!

Come click on my Twitter button on my blog! I'd love to follow you on Twitter!

Summer said...

I write fairly slowly and sort of edit in my head before I type, but I don't do any big revisions until everything is said and done.

laurel said...

I did far too much edit-as-you-go with my MS., only to discover that some pieces I slaved over really needed to be cut once I had a complete draft and saw how all the pieces fit together. If I were to do it over again, I'd only go do minor smoothing of the previous day's work to get into the flow and then just draft, draft, draft. Otherwise you can waste YEARS. Seriously.

Crystal Cook said...

I'm not at the point where I'm ready to edit the whole thing (mostly because it's not finished yet he, he). But I wake up in the morning and write fast getting everything out that's in my head as quickly as possible. Then a few hours later (usually while my kids have breakfast) I read through it, to see it it makes sense. I don't make huge edits, just sharpening it a little. This helps me to see where I'm going and it saves time for editing out all those pesky adverbs later :)

Bish Denham said...

I edit as I go. Then I put it away for a while. When I come back to it fresh I can always spot where things need to be changed/added.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Jody and Laurel are both brilliant, so I recommend listening to their advice - it's what I would do. :-)

Kimberly Franklin said...

My big problem with editing is that I do it as I go, so progress takes a little longer. I've tried waiting but I just can't do it. I'm too OCD like that. Good Luck.

Also, I tried to look you up on Twitter and it didn't find you. So weird. I can never find anyone on Twitter. It's like the Twitter Gods want me to be friendless. So heres my name... find me: kimfranklin25

Happy Friday!!!

sarahjayne smythe said...

I edit as I write since my inner editor is usually screaming me stupid. But I know that's not the best way to edit, so I'm trying to move away from it. :) Good luck finding your own best way.

dirtywhitecandy said...

I write the first draft as a big splurge - ignoring the inner editor, just getting it down with whatever takes my fancy (although I do outline first). I don't edit or fiddle until subsequent drafts, and then I may do a lot of passes for different things - story + structure, individual scene structure, then finally the 'writing'.

It sounds like a lot of treading the same ground but there are so many things to get right that I can't do it all in one fell swoop.

dirtywhitecandy said...

I write the first draft as a big splurge - ignoring the inner editor, just getting it down with whatever takes my fancy (although I do outline first). I don't edit or fiddle until subsequent drafts, and then I may do a lot of passes for different things - story + structure, individual scene structure, then finally the 'writing'.

It sounds like a lot of treading the same ground but there are so many things to get right that I can't do it all in one fell swoop.

WindyA said...

I do a little of both. I edit a little as I go, and I also do a series of major revisions after my first draft is finished.

My general process after I've finished a draft is to let it sit for a week or more, then go back and do my first round of edits. Then I send it out to my crit buddies.

I don't edit as soon as I get their feedback. I read it, let it soak in, but just leave the ms as is for another week or so before I go back and make notes from their thoughts and then attack the ms again.

It's a neverending cycle of revisions, but with each draft I consciously know my novel's getting better.

P.S. I cannot stress how much help my crit buddies have been. While sharing my books with positive reinforcement peeps (like family and close friends) I'm uncertain of the truly candidness of their feedback to help me improve my writing.

Jen said...

Amazing advice you guys!!! Thank you so much!! I love my positive reinforcement to keep me writing but a crit group will definitely I'll be looking into when I have finished my first draft! At the rate I'm going I'll be needing one in the next couple of months!