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August 16, 2013


Elaine Viets

Good round-up of advice, Dana. Mark Twain also recommended that we glue ourselves to the desk chair . . .that was before the days of cat videos on the Internet, of course.


I love the editing process more than I hate it, but sometimes it is tough to admit parts that we love don't work and have to dismantle them. But another good bit of advice is to "Kill your darlings." I really liked the marble metaphor, Dana. It never occurred to me before, but we do make our own marble.

Barb Goffman

Something I've found helpful: Edit the pages out of order. It helps me focus on the words, instead of getting caught up in the story.

Dana Cameron

Elaine, that is excellent advice--providing one avoids Solitaire games as well. :)

Thanks, Kris--I appreciate editing, and am always eager to improve my work, but man, is it a workout!

Barb, that's a great tip! I used to edit journal articles in reverse order to find the typos!


I don't know how practical this is but, thinking of the overuse of a word(s) I wonder about skimming through the last book or two in a series and looking for recycled descriptions. One author, who shall remain nameless, would use the exact same paragraph in every book to describe the main character and a secondary character. By book three it just glared out at you and from that point on you could almost see it coming in the following books.

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