Facing the Beast

With the draft of my novel complete, I’ve been lazily ignoring it.  I know, I know.  It’s terrible.  It has been handed off to my readers, some of whom have returned it to me.  The remarks have been thus far been positive, but that’s making me a little nervous.  The praise is great and does wonders for my writing ego, but I know there’s mistakes and they haven’t been addressed.  

Of course, me actually rereading and editing this will help.  I haven’t opened the printed out copy yet.  Or the Pages document.  Honestly?  I’m getting nervous to look at it.  In my head, it’s still a glorious little draft.  The only draft that I haven’t wanted to bury my head in the sand when someone reads it.  A part of me doesn’t want to find the mistakes.  Editing does crazy things to me.  

Part of my novel-neglect (and my blog!) has been because of school.  I’m only taking 12 credits this semester, but it’s been my busiest yet!  I’ve had two papers accepted into a research conference, and getting those prepared has taken more of my time than I anticipated.  But I can’t blame my editing-neglect on time constraints.  It’s mostly because I’m just a lazy editor for my own work.  I’m a great editor for everyone else though!  Funny how that works, isn’t it?  😉

How about y’all?  Is there anything you dread in the writing process.  Editing, drafting, and rewriting have always been a struggle for me.  I’m too harsh on my own work.  Do I really need to agonize over the word “and” for an hour?  Exactly.  ;p


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. wolfraven80
    Feb 15, 2012 @ 15:11:52

    Yeah working on drafts is definitely not my thing. I find rewriting to be really tedious because it’s not fresh; it’s not writing. Sometimes I wonder if I have what it takes to be a professional writer when I seem to have such trouble with an essential part of the process. I’ve also not yet figured out what I need to change beyond typos. I hear about these writers who make sweeping changes in later drafts and I’m like… “Well… I added a semicolon on page nine…”

    I’ve got a couple more books on editing in my to-read pile. You never know, one of them might actually prove useful.


  2. nerdywordyjana
    Feb 16, 2012 @ 00:16:16

    I know there’s some small things that need to be changed (I introduced a character twice, somewhere, I think?) but the majority of it is finding my typos. Which there will be plenty of them, I know, but beyond that… what else am I looking for? I agree with you completely.

    I think I need to buy a couple of books on editing. Just to give me an idea of what to look for, I suppose. It’s a good idea. Any recommendations?


    • wolfraven80
      Feb 18, 2012 @ 13:23:16

      I can’t read books on editing while writing a draft without getting really neurotic, so I haven’t read them yet and thus can’t give you a personal opinion on them, except to say that they were recommended to me.

      Manuscript Makeover by Elizabeth Lyon
      Revision and Self-Editing by James Scott Bell (I did read a different book of his that was okay.

      Another friend, years ago, also recommended The First Five Pages by Noah Lukeman and Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and Dave King. I started both of these several years ago and didn’t get far because reading the gave me writer’s block on my draft. :/ Also one of the two annoyed me by trying to “improve” on a passage from The Great Gatsby which I thought was a severe case of editorial arrogance.

      I also have other, more general books on writing, but I think that covers my collection of unread and semi-unread books on editing. ;P


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