Editing Round One

Many authors (Neil Gaiman to name a popular one) have stated that their best editing comes once they have lost some of the emotional attachment to the writing.  That doesn’t mean that they don’t care about the work.  It means that if they start to read a scene that they particularly enjoyed writing they will look at it with fresh eyes.  They might find out that it doesn’t add to the story and needs to be cut.  Or perhaps they are reading a scene that was hard to write and they didn’t enjoy previously.  They might read that again and realize that the scene is good and needed in their novel.  They wouldn’t have seen that if they took the emotional baggage from writing the scenes with them when they were editing.

Two years ago for National Novel Writing Month I started a story currently known as Zee.  It got finished a couple of months after November and was my first ever finished rough draft.  I’ve been letting it age a while, until it was time to edit.  Something I decided to start yesterday.  I think that my writers emotional baggage is gone.  Now the new editing feelings are approaching.  I’ve made it through a couple thousand words and there is a lot to fix.  Some will be easy, just moving some paragraphs around. Some is going to be harder, such as deleting scene’s I enjoyed writing.  Some I have no idea how to fix.

At the beginning of my novel Zee has a run in with some aliens she can barely understand.  In the middle of the book they make another appearance and everyone can communicate without a problem.  I completely forgot that they were not supposed to have the same language.  I’m not sure exactly how to fix this.  I don’t want it to be too easy by having my main character create a translating device.  I definitely don’t want to rewrite the last half of my book to facilitate other worldly alien languages. It’s something I have to mull over while I finish reading the whole novel.


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