Archive for September, 2014

Editing is hard, you guys

Posted: September 4, 2014 in writing

In case anyone didn’t know this already, editing is hard. I spent an hour this morning working on about 200 words. Taking them out. Putting them back in. Rearranging them. Looking at the next ten pages of manuscript and wondering if all this dialogue should move somewhere else. It’s nightmarish. I’m still not even sure that what I ended up with is in English.

clue flames heaving breath

There are some writers who seem to enjoy the process. I am not one of these people. If I had my choice I would never edit anything ever again. Ever. Ever ever. Sadly this is not a thing I can do. Readers seem to want these things called “endings” and apparently they also enjoy coherent plots in their books. Go figure.

So I’m editing.

It’s the downfall of my pantsing process (aka: no outlining and making stuff up as I go) that it also requires extra work to insert things that I didn’t know I needed or to remove the extended scenes of my characters making breakfast while I figured out what they were going to do next. (True story.) You would think that my intense dislike (loathing, hatred, paralyzing fear) of editing would make me switch to outlining. And you would be wrong. Apparently I’m a glutton for punishment. You would also think that after spending the last year and a half on edits (for two different stories, mind) that I would be better at this whole thing. And you would be wrong again.

Editing is still hard. I’m pretty sure it will always be hard for me.

Some days I’m overcome with a manic kind of joy at every hundred words I finish. I like those days. I wish I had more of them. Right now I’m back in that place where I stare at every paragraph and wonder if I hate it because it really needs to go or because I’ve been editing too long. Am I killing my darlings or am I taking a meat cleaver to them just for the sake of doing it? It would be easier if someone could tell me the answer. Maybe I should invest in a Magic 8 Ball. It’s liable to be about as accurate as any real person’s opinion, including mine.

fuck this shit hannibal

So hello from the land of editing! I’m procrastinating now and writing a blog post for the first time in months because it’s just that awesome. Wish you were here. No, seriously. I wish you were here. Editing this book for me.