Bright Lights and epiphanies in editing

rowingIt is a beautiful sunny day and I am sitting on my porch as I write this.  I have missed my porch.  During the Winter it has been too cold and the Spring has been rather wet.  We have had a few good days but for some reason I haven’t made it out to the porch to write.

Possibly because of the glare.  I am having a difficult time seeing the computer screen.  White porch + bright sunlight = low screen visibility.   I have sunglasses….somewhere.  I guess I will just have to make do.

I came out here to work on my Science Fiction novel.  It has been simmering in a box for Alice_in_wonderland_1951awhile now, waiting for me to get around to the next rewrite/edit.  I have this problem with editing…I don’t like to do it.   Part of that is because I don’t really know what to do when it comes to editing.  I know something is wrong.  I can feel that it’s off, but pinpointing exactly what, always gives me trouble.   Some of this is just because I don’t know what questions to ask myself and some of this is lack of practice.  As in most things, the more you do it the better you get.

I have been reading this book, Self-Editing for Fiction Writers, and it has been a big help.  The other day I actually took my Sci-Fi novel out of its box and started to work on it.  First I re-read it and then I spent thirty minutes starring at the first page.  I knew stuff was wrong.  The second paragraph in was really wrong, but no matter how I turned the page or willed the answer to come to me, I couldn’t figure it out.  So I turned to my friend Jessi and said, “What’s wrong with this sentence right here?”

motivator312687f0669fbfe47c2a3fe4249375fe980cc139She read over the page and pointed out the sentence in question would read easier if I made it into three sentences and the next paragraph could be summed up in one three word sentence.  I looked at again and decide that her suggestions were Pure Genius! After that the rest of the page went smoothly.  Also, I began to notice I repeatedly made similar mistakes on other pages.

I rewrote that first page then went back to compare it to the original.  It was so very much plot holesbetter that it made me excited.  Maybe this editing thing isn’t so bad after all. 🙂

 

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