Welcome to another episode of my podcast.
Revising a book
Happy week after Thanksgiving – hope the calories were removed from your feast and you are enjoying a chance to work on your writing goals for the end of the year.
I have been working on the second round of revisions for my work in progress a contemporary romance and it has been going well. Well, as well as they can go during a pandemic and a holiday week.
But I am anticipating going out into the world with this book early next year. I hope you will be excited to read it! But there will be more info on that to come. ESP to my newsletter subscribers. So if you are not a part of the Zanies- go on over to kimsmithauthor.com and sign up.
But, for now, here at the podcast I wanted to answer the age old question on editing a novel since I am so busy with all that and more.
Well, first of all, are you editing or revising? Those terms are used interchangeably but they really are not the same thing.
To edit is to look at all the minutiae of a novel. The spelling, the punctuation, the grammar, the sentence structure, the chapter stuff, etc. To revise a novel is to fix plot holes and create more three dimensional characters and develop settings and descriptions etc.
I am revising.
I do the edit stuff at the very last. To me story and what makes it sellable comes first. I can fix missing words any time but to make sure a subplot is concluded satisfactorily, for instance, is so much more important.
But as in all things, there are opinions on this and that just happens to be mine. There are a lot of ways to go about revising your book. You do not have to follow anyone’s way to do it.
Just know that all first drafts suck and you will need to revise. We all do. It’s just the nature of the beast.
My hardest to revise area is setting and description. I mean how do you know when you have done the job and not overdone it? We all like sensory details but pages of it isn’t really necessary.
Unless you are Stephen king and creating a mood. He is the master mood setter.
Okay so moving on.
Telling the reader where the characters are (in a physical way) and keeping the action moving is pretty vital. Recently in a discussion I told someone that I was not one who described my characters appearance preferring instead to allow the reader to “see” them as they chose.
The other party was a little surprised at this saying how they liked that bit to help visualize the people in a book.
Description needs to be done cleverly, y’all. Don’t tell us about them looking In a mirror and appraising themselves. I mean we may do that to ourselves but reading it just sounds weird.
I mean do you think, oh look, I have brown hair and blue eyes and my teeth sparkle? No, you do not. You might ask if you have anything in your teeth, tho.
One final note I’d like to mention is to check out the list of characters you have when revising. Sometimes we give way too much page space to some minor person who never comes back in the book. That will be a great place to cut down on word count.
Okay, that’s enough for today I guess. I am promoting my short story collection of sweet and sexy romances this week. If you are interested go to Amazon and check out a sweet and spicy Christmas.
Namaste for now – kim
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