Self-Editing Trick

July 17, 2015 at 10:09 pm (Uncategorized)

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Here’s a little trick to help you edit your work. Imagine that you’re submitting your work for critique or publication. This can be to a book doctor, small press or agent. Now close your eyes and imagine getting negative feedback or rejection. Picture this in as much detail as you can. Now, open your eyes and write down everything they say.

This is actually your writer’s intuition telling you what aspects of your work you find to be the most problematic.

Once you’ve done this, go through your book and copy and paste it into a new document or documents, giving it a different file name. Go through it and try to incorporate as many of these changes as you can. Note I said “as many” and “not all,” as you will undoubtedly encounter scenes where you still feel strongly that nothing should change. You should listen to your intuition about that as well.

When you’ve changed as much as you reasonably think you can without ruining your project, and when your inner critic is more or less quiet, then you’ll know the piece is done.