(One of my drinks from my days of coffee shop writing)
If you know me then you know that I don’t like editing. Writing is my favorite part. Creating the story is easy and happy and flowing and I can invent things on the fly. Editing is slow and meticulous and boggy and I feel like I am somehow undoing some of the magic of my first draft. With editing I tend to have either a very good day or a very bad day – and I don’t mean good and bad in terms of productivity. I mean I either accomplished a ton and feel great or I binge watched Netflix and am in the middle of an existential crisis.
With the rough draft for ‘Sciamachy’ done and working on publishing ‘Adumbrate’ next month, my life has officially shifted from ‘creating’ to ‘editing’ as of last week. I’ve noticed that my bad days are due to my turning my critical eye away from my manuscript and onto every other part of my life. Super helpful (not).
That said, I’m actually doing pretty well. I’ve had one day of total writing avoidance and one day of total meltdown. Meanwhile, I have gone through all of Adumbrate twice and made notes as well as an editing plan (which is useful if you’re me and like to see the light at the end of the tunnel).
I edit well when I am at a coffee shop. Even though I’m in public and there are people and noises and sights and smells, I feel like there are far less distractions at a coffee shop. I am less tempted to use their wifi and I feel like other people are watching me working/not working so I feel pressured to keep working. However, I can’t spend every day in a coffee shop, so I’ve been looking for new ideas to change my writing routine at home so I don’t end up avoiding my work or hating my work.
Last week I read this article from Business Insider about some disgustingly productive and ‘successful’ writer who I probably hate now. Anyway, the writer describes his schedule when he took ‘book leave’ from his normal full time job to write and edit this 93,000 word manuscript. His method seemed logical and not frightening so I’ve been giving it a try. Not very far in, obviously, but I have already benefited from it.
Editing is a completely different change of pace – which is, I think, a plus. I’m hoping that with a renewed vision and plan, these next couple months of editing will be my best editing experiences.
‘Adumbrate’ is on schedule for its debut on February 16!
2 Comments Add yours
May I ask, do you edit yourself or pay someone else?
Great question! I edit myself. I did a writing apprenticeship under a published author and NYU professor who taught me how to self-edit. On scenes I’m stuck in or feel are weak I will get a second (or third) opinion.