What I’m Writing

I wish I could say that I got more done on the writing front this month, but sadly  my focus was torn between working on listings for my Etsy shop, the changes going on with Etsy, some orders that I needed to work on, finally getting to weeding the flower bed and fertilizing the rose bushes, and my kids.

My two writing goals in July were:

1. Writing The Lost Heir Series

I did work on updating my Series Binder for The Lost Heir Series, but I kinda ran out of steam when I got to the character bios. My character bios have always been simple and basic, mostly how the character looks, dresses, possible family connections, and any idiosyncrasies that pop up that I should be aware of. There are very few changes that need to be made to the bios that I figured could be done while I’m writing.

The next thing I wanted to accomplish and only half did was tracking the  various story threads and character arcs through the series of books in the hopes of being able to plan out each book so that I know what happens and can utilize the over 186k words already written. This is going to take more time then I thought for two reasons: the kids are distracting and still need mom’s help to cook meals (this is something they are still learning to do) and I need to make sure that each book is a complete story.

I ended up putting this aside, probably until September when the haying is done and the kids are in school, so that I can take the time I need to figure things out.

2. Finish editing Loving the Goddess of Love

I definitely didn’t complete this one, but I did get a few chapters edited this month and finalized the cover art and title change. There was a lot more wrong with the editing of this book then I first thought and it makes me cringe that I paid two different editors to edit this book and they did a horrible job of it!

The plan is to continue working on editing this book until I can send it to an editor that I trust to fix my improper use of commas. At this time, I’m not sure when this will come back out as writing is my passion project more than my focus at the moment, but it is starting to look like it will be closer to November.

Wishing you all the best,

Stephannie Beman

 

The Difference between Editing, Proofreading, or Revising

A few years ago, I would have thought that editing, proofreading, and revising were the same thing. i would have have used the terms interchangeably, and I would have been wrong.

Editing, proofreading, and revising are each a separate process that contributes to the finished product in its own way. If you plan to uses the services of an editor, then the definitions below will help you tell said editor what you really want done with you manuscript.

Revising is the reading of your manuscript to organize your thoughts on paper to match the thoughts in your mind. Revising takes place at the level of the sentence, paragraph or higher.

Editing tests each word and phrase to see that it is accurate, appropriate, or necessary, changing the language more than the ideas. Editing is more stylized and mechanical work, taking place at the level of the sentence or word.

Proofreading is checking the manuscript for accuracy and correctness. The last phase of the editing process, proofreading should be completed after the conceptual and stylistic concerns have been addressed. You review spelling, punctuation, capitalization, and usage to make sure no careless mistakes.

As an Author, I find it good practice to revise before you edit. First, in revising you may cut out whole sections of the draft because they no longer suit your manuscript. If you have already edited those now-deleted sections, all that careful work goes to naught. Two, once you have invested time in carefully editing sentences, you become reluctant to cut them, even though these sections may no longer suit your purpose.

Editing Tips and Red Flags in Fiction Writing

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m tired of reading reviews that use “poorly edited” as an umbrella term for, “This isn’t how I would have done it,” “I didn’t like your writing style,” “You have to much description, or not enough description,” “This doesn’t read like a traditionally published book,” “You repeat phrases too much,” “I hate your characters,” “I hate you,” “Awkward phrasing,” or other some such thing. Some of those things are editing problems. The rest is just flak.

For the sake of my sanity, I made a list of words that may place you on the poorly edited list. I’ve used more than my fair share of these words. I’m positive you can find them in this short introduction. The thing about the words on the list is that they are more ‘telling’ word rather than ‘showing’ words. And as the writing advice goes, ‘show, don’t tell.’  However, just because you may use these words in your writing, it doesn’t mean you aren’t a good writer. There are times when these words are needful and it’s just silly to avoid them.

I use the find/replace feature in Word to find these words in my manuscripts. Once found, I decide if the word could be deleted and a better phrasing used. It takes some doing, but my writing is better for it. So here’s the list:

• and – but (both can indicate run on sentences)
• that (unnecessary in most sentences, but there are times that it is necessary. Rule of thumb, if you can read the sentence and it makes sense without “that” in it, you don’t need it. Also be on the look out when “that” really should be “who” or “which”)
• just
• very
• nearly almost
• really
• seem appear
• felt feel
• begin began
• would should could
• quite
• few
• rather
• thing
• stuff
• anyway
• because
•“-ly” adverb
•-ingly (use sparingly. They’re trip ups for readers and can lead to confusion)
• so
• even
• then
• down up (as in sit down, stand up can be redundant)
• only
• got get
•-ness (some of the words with –ness at the end can be stumbling blocks that cause confusion)
•-ize (again, not all words with –ize are bad, but try to minimize them (Sorry couldn’t help myself))
• it
•is – are – was – were
• to be – be – being – been
• am
• has – had – have
• there is – there are – there was – there were

(Disclaimer: this is a re-post from April 2011. It has been updated.)

Editing Tips and Red Flags in Writing

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m tired of reading reviews that use “poorly edited” as an umbrella term for, “This isn’t how I would have done it,” “I didn’t like your writing style,” “You have to much description, or not enough description,” “This doesn’t read like a traditionally published book,” “You repeat phrases too much,” “I hate your characters,” “I hate you,” “Awkward phrasing,” or other some such thing. Some of those things are editing problems. The rest is just flak.

For the sake of my sanity, I made a list of words that may place you on the poorly edited list. I’ve used more than my fair share of these words. I’m positive you can find them in this short introduction.

I suggestion using the find feature to remove these words from your manuscript. It might take some doing, but your writing and your readers will thank you for it. So here’s the list:

• and – but (both can indicate run on sentences)
• that (unnecessary in most sentences, but there are times that it is necessary. Also be on the look out when “that” really should be “who”)
• just
• very
• nearly almost
• really
• seem appear
• felt feel
• begin began
• would should could
• quite
• few
• rather
• thing
• stuff
• anyway
• because
•“-ly” adverb
•-ingly (use sparingly. They’re trip ups for readers and can lead to confusion)
• so
• even
• then
• down up (as in sit down, stand up can be redundant)
• only
• got get
•-ness (some of the words with –ness at the end can be stumbling blocks that cause confusion)
•-ize (again, not all words with –ize are bad, but try to minimize them (Sorry couldn’t help myself))
• it
•is – are – was – were
• to be – be – being – been
• am
• has – had – have
• there is – there are – there was – there were

Editing, Proofreading, or Revising, Which one is it

Ruth’s note: I’m republishing this post because some questions came up in the previous post about this topic.  😀

******************************************************

I always thought editing, proofreading, and revising were the same thing and used the terms interchangeably, but then I became an editor and a proofreader, I found that each is a separate process that contributes to the finished product in its own way. If you plan to uses the services of an editor, then the definitions below will help you tell said editor what you really want done with you manuscript.

Revising is the reading of your manuscript to organize your thoughts on paper to match the thoughts in your mind. Revising takes place at the level of the sentence, paragraph or higher.

Editing tests each word and phrase to see that it is accurate, appropriate, or necessary, changing the language more than the ideas. Editing is more stylized and mechanical work, taking place at the level of the sentence or word.

Proofreading is checking the manuscript for accuracy and correctness. The last phase of the editing process, proofreading should be completed after the conceptual and stylistic concerns have been addressed. You review spelling, punctuation, capitalization, and usage to make sure no careless mistakes.

As an Author and an Editor, I find it good practice to revise before you edit. First, in revising you may cut out whole sections of the draft because they no longer suit your manuscript. If you have already edited those now-deleted sections, all that careful work goes to naught. Two, once you have invested time in carefully editing sentences, you become reluctant to cut them, even though these sections may no longer suit your purpose.