Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Editing Tools

Here are ten things you need when editing (this is not an exhaustive list!):

  1. A nice pen - mine's a Sheaffer - for making notes.
  2. A red pen - Bic medium - for marking changes.
  3. Post-it notes for marking places in the manuscript / annotations.
  4. Index cards for chapter synopses / plot points.  These can be easily shuffled for better flow of story.
  5. A small leather journal for capturing editing ideas on the move.  Best used with Sheaffer pen.
  6. Glasses - if you need them!
  7. Time.  Plenty of protected time away from any distractions e.g. Blogs!
  8. Water.  I keep mine chilled in a little fridge under my desk.
  9. Tea and Coffee.  I tend to alternate depending on mood or desired outcome.  Coffee for a serious burst of writing.  Tea for slower contemplation.
  10. Dictionary / Thesaurus / Spell check (3 for the price of 1!)
  11. A Brucie bonus for when you get to the end - the very end, mind - a Schimmelpennick cigar.  Smoke it or simply hold it in your mouth.  Whatever you go for, know that you deserve it.

Saturday, 20 April 2013

The Editing Begins

So here it is.  A completed first draft.  A thing of beauty and weight.  A tangible slab of effort and evenings and week-ends, formed from layers of crisp white paper and black ink.  Ninety-thousand words sweated through pores, wrung from brain cells, forcibly extracted...okay so sounds like it was a real hardship, but on reflection, well...yeah, it was a hardship.  But it's done.  And boy does it feel great to hold. The difference between something on screen and something in your hand, the virtual and the real, is exciting.  My work has three dimensions (physically - let's hope it has three dimensions emotionally!)

The Editing begins.  I've had an initial read through and I still feel positive.  Over the next few days or weeks, or however long it takes I'll start to edit for plot and consistency and make sure that the story is in the right order and that it makes good sense.  That's my first target.  Here goes...

Thursday, 18 April 2013

I'm Back!

Well I never actually went away.  I haven't been exploring the Bolivian Jungle.  I haven't joined a secret sect.  No, I've simply fallen into the work trap.  Much like a Venus Fly Trap, it's sticky sweet surface coaxes you in and before you realise anything is wrong it's taken a hold of you, and the more you fight against it the deeper it pulls you in.

That said, I've not succumbed fully.  The words have been flowing through my fingertips and onto the screen at a steady rate.  I have completed ninety thousand words since my last post way back at the beginning of 2012.  Unfortunately something had to give, and it was the blog that felt the cruel, cold blade of the "stealing back some time" axe.

However, it seems that despite the long absence this blog is still receiving interest and the occasional comment.  Thank you.  For that reason I will endeavour to keep up a weekly correspondance.  I'll bring publishing news, matters of interest, personal writing updates, whatever streams past and catches the eye.

Work, write, blog!  Maybe it is possible to do all three.