Nothing beats the feeling of typing The End following the last scene of your manuscript. You’ve spent weeks to months to years laboring over sentence construction, timeline details, and character development, among many other things. Now is the time to celebrate.
Because soon, it will be time to edit.
If you’re groaning, stop it. This is where you take your masterpiece and smooth the rough edges. Not all artists have this luxury. We writers get as many passes as it takes to get it right.
There is a myriad of posts and checklists on how to best attack the editing process. I like to start with three easy (though not necessarily quick) edits that give me a sense of immediate progress. Following these suggestions will result in tighter prose and eliminate several “flag” words that could make an editor or agent pass on your project.
For illustration purposes, I’m using screen shots from my…
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