I often find that the hardest process of anything I write is the editing process. I realize how extremely difficult it is to change a work of art, you feel that you have perfected. As authors we have to be willing to take advice, and to change our wording around to make things flow more smoothly, which is easier said than done. I’m not going to pretend that I can change that or make it easier. However, as I go through the process of editing my Novella, there is some advice I can offer to attempt to make this process quicker and less painful.
#1- Do a good job the first time. This advice may seem obvious, but it is something that many authors often overlook. There is a balance between being able to articulate ones thoughts before they escape their head and being able to correctly articulate ones thoughts. Take enough time on the first draft that you feel as if, it could almost be ready to publish the next day if all grammatical and spelling errors were fixed. As you write your book or screenplay or whatever it may be, take the time to think through word usage and sentence structures. This may seem strenuous, but it will make for a less painful editing process.
#2- Avoid some embarrassment, and do a couple self-edits before turning it over to someone for editing. when I was doing my self-edits i realized some unnatural dialogue, and one chapter so poorly structured that an editor would have torn it to pieces. Make your changes before an editor gets the opportunity to suggest what they would do. This ensures more originality in the writing, and more tonal consistency.
#3- Choose your editor’s wisely. This one almost goes without saying, yet it’s importance can be overlooked. Don’t have your mom or your grandma edit your new book. It is important to chose someone who can be objective and equally important to chose someone who sees your potential and understands not only the genre of your writing, but also the themes portrayed through your writing. Maybe even consider , having multiple people give their advice. Not only will you get faster results, you will also get more accurate results.
#4- Keep your integrity. Editing is an essential step in the process, but you must remember that no one understands your writing better than you. Don’t ever listen to anyone who tells you that your story is to dark, or the ideas portrayed through your novel are well represented, but a little out there. Many great writers are progressive thinkers, whose work and ideas were not appreciated until they were dead. Keep your voice in your novels and set a mood of some sort. The job of a writer is not to gain fame or money, it is to write a message to the world; It is to leave a legacy, in print. Whether or not the universe listens, it doesn’t matter. Better is the one who shares his wisdom with the world, though he may have little, than the man with much wisdom, who does not allow the world to view his treasure.