Edits kill me. If I could write the perfect manuscript right off the bat, I’d be a happy, happy girl. But that, of course, is not to be. So I find myself, again, in the middle of the editing process.
Why does editing distress me so? Well because by the time I’m editing, that first rush of passion is over. In my head, the book is done, so my motivation is rapidly moving elsewhere, toward the next new idea, a new character a new something. But instead of being free to embrace all this newness, I’m in the past, editing the manuscript I’ve finished.
Don’t get me wrong, I completely understand the need for a solid editing process (and if you’re lucky a solid editor). Re-reading and editing are what produce the change from a good manuscript to an excellent manuscript. In fact, with this latest manuscript, it will change the entire ‘vibe’ of the book.
I write, you see, most naturally in third person, past tense. Some time ago though, a wonderful mentor explained to me that tweens and their older counterparts, teens, prefer to read in first person. So I changed the manuscript to first person (a process that wasn’t nearly as simple as I’d first thought it would be). Now, I find myself changing it from past to present tense. Why? Because for this particular manuscript, the story feels more ‘immediate’ and spontaneous when written in the present tense.
Being who I am, and hating, as I do, the editing process, to begin with I changed just the first chapter; hoping against hope that the changes would make no difference. I was wrong. The switch from past to present made as big a difference as changing from third to first person. A good, positive, BIG difference.
Now I’m doing deals with myself. A chapter of change, followed by something fun. A chapter of change then a piece of chocolate. You get the picture right?
The other good thing to arise from this editing process is the new scenes. New scenes aren’t editing really. They’re still new and fresh and exciting. I find myself thrilled with the way the new scenes provide new angles and understandings. LOL…I also love the way they loosen up my thought process!
So here I am blogging (something nice) then it’s one more chapter of editing before dinner (another something nice!). If you have any advice on a better way to tackle this whole editing process, please let me know. If not, just wish me luck!