Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Editing Time Savers?


I'm in the process of editing a current project, and for the life of me I can't find an efficient or easier way to do it. When it comes to writing the novel, I've learned different techniques that have saved me time and made the entire process much easier.

Are there any tips on editing?

I feel like I'm just reading the blasted thing over and over looking for mistakes, plot holes, timing issues, etc., but it takes FOREVER. Is this just the nature of the beast or am I missing a valuable step somewhere?

How do you guys do it?

10 comments:

Jani said...

It might just be the beast bothering you. If you've done all the editing you usually do, maybe have somebody else give it a read. At this point, if I've missed it before, I'll keep on missing it. This is where I hope my CPs and betas picked up anything I might have missed.

Maybe you're just looking too hard.

R. Mac Wheeler said...

Every paragraph you ever write, can be changed, even if grammatically correct and aesthetically pleasing. And every time you read it, you'll find something else to change.

Best analogy is simply opening a large vein.

No work is ever complete.

There are no short cuts.

I suggest using a very sharp blade.

- Mac

R. Mac Wheeler said...

Alas...can you tell I'm in the middle of editing my lastest?

S. Kyle Davis said...

Try using a software like yWriter:

http://skyledavis.com/possibly-the-best-writer-software-ever-made/

http://skyledavis.com/in-the-mean-time-ywriter-again/

Scrivner is another good one, though it costs. yWriter is free.

These tools are great for outlining/chunking your novel, which REALLY help out in the revision process.

Lorelei said...

Since I'm in the middle of my own edits, and I don't know exactly how you edit...

I use the search & find in my doc., for those repeated words that we want to get rid of as many as possible, or word phrases that make writing weak. I use the serch and find and when they find the word/phrase, I hit "high light", and do this with every word/phrase I've got on my list. This way I'm not reading through every dang word at this point.

Hope that helps you (and anyone else) (^;

Rachel said...

Excellent advice, everyone. Just what I needed.

Sharon Bayliss said...

I do the same thing as Lorelei. I have a list of words that are weak, and use CTRL-F to find them and re-write. Of course, that's really only cosmetic. As far as I know, there are no short cuts for the bigger issues. But for me, the fear of working on those edits always seems much worse than the edits themselves.

Good luck!

Unknown said...

Sometimes the one writing it can not be the one doing the final edits. It seems the brain is too busy thinking what should be there and not what is actually there.

MarcyKate said...

Scrivener is my secret editing weapon. I believe there is still a 30-day free trial, but it's worth every single penny you pay for it. The note card feature is great for re-envisioning structure, but my favorite part is that you can make notes in the sidebar as you go along, things like "More Dragons" or "You changed her name to Penelope five chapters ago." This way, you can make note of changes you make and go through the book for consistency.

Kimberlee Turley said...

I spend infinitely longer editing than writing. Can't offer any advice because your experience sounds just like mine. Good luck, and if you figure something out, let me know!