I’ve got some exciting news – last Friday, I FINISHED my draft of A Magpie Mind. It needs some stuff added in, including chapter breaks, as well as intensive edits, but this is it. It’s finally done.
That’s what I’m working on now. The edits and additions.
FACTS ABOUT SARAH
#1 I HATE EDITING. This doesn’t mean that I don’t do it. It just means that I’m not happy about it.
#2 I REALLY REALLY REALLY HATE EDITING MY OWN WORK ON THE COMPUTER. Easy solution to this one: DON’T.
In order to edit, I need a physical copy of my manuscript. I CANNOT edit my own work in a Word or Scrivener document. I miss things because I see what I expect to see, and I get bored and distracted. So I print it, which is laborious and a tremendous waste of paper, but completely necessary.
When I have my manuscript in front of me in physical form, it’s a lot easier for me to detach from the text and read it as though it’s not something I’ve spent ages writing. It’s a snap to find typos (UGH. SO MANY TYPOS.) and it can be less difficult to tell if a sentence is clunky and awkward if I can see it on the page instead of skimming over it on the computer.
Having a physical copy also allows me to work in sections, which is especially important in the case of this manuscript, which has yet to be broken up into chapters (yet another part of this round of edits). I printed double-sided with two pages to a side, meaning that each sheet comprises a total of four pages of my manuscript. I go through a sheet at a time, crossing things out and revising lines and fixing grammar on the physical copy, and then making those changes in the electronic copy so that I won’t need to make them all at once I’ve finished with the physical copy.
It may be slow going, but it also really works for me. This is effectively how I edited in my Master’s Programme days, marking down problems during workshops and then going back to make changes in the electronic copy when I got home. It’s comfortable and useful, and it ensures that I don’t miss things I might not see if I only edited the electronic file.
I still hate it, but at least it’s doable.
How do you edit? Do you mark up a physical or an electronic copy? Do you find that your current methods work for you?