My Editing Process

(The picture has nothing to do with this post, I just like it)


I think that editing can be both the best and worst part of the writing/publishing process. It can be tedious, but at the same time you have a golden opportunity to create something great out of something that is (hopefully) already good. When I'm looking to publish a book, I take it through a relatively simple editing process, and I thought I would share that below!


The first part of the editing process for me is to put the book into the right format. My books tend to be either 5 x 8 or 6 x 9 when they're published in print, and so I download templates from Kindle Direct Publishing to copy and paste my manuscript into before editing. I think this helps to visualize the book a bit better, and I like to think that it helps my editing a little bit more.


Next, I take it through a format edit. I check the indentation, the dashes and ellipses, and go through for any minor spelling mistakes that can be caught in a normal spell check program. No grammar or sentence edits quite yet. This, again, helps me better visualize the book, and I am quite the visual learner.


Third, I go through the most time-consuming part: the addition edit. I make a goal for how I want each chapter to turn out, and I edit chapter-by-chapter, adding in subplots, new characters, and running grammar/sentence edits as well. This is where I add in a paragraph describing the room or a few extra lines of dialogue between characters. It takes me the longest time to do this part of the process, and it may or may not be the part I'm currently at with Lost.


Fourth, I like to run through with spell check one more time. It can't hurt.


Fifth, I order a proof copy of the book and read the entire thing with post-its and a pen handy. I make notes directly in my proof copy about what needs to be changed, and once I finish the read through, I make the changes to the manuscript on my computer. One more spell check, and that does it.


That's the highlight reel of my editing process! It's a bit on the short side, I know, but I'm an impatient person and I like to have things done. The third step tends to be where I get stuck for months to years, but it always ends up working out in the long run. I hope this gave someone a little bit of an idea for their own editing process, or at least inspired someone to keep editing that difficult novel.


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