Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Editing and Rewriting

My critique group hears every chapter of whatever book I happen to be working on. They are invaluable at catching words and phrases I use far too often. And they remind me to put in things I gloss over. One member of the group always wants me to make moments between my heroine and her husband more tender, another reminds me to attach a color to clothing and objects.

Once they've heard the whole book and I've worked on each chapter, I print it out and go over it carefully. Amazingly, I find more mistakes and inconsistencies. Sometimes doing the fixes contributes to more typos, extra periods and two words used that mean the same thing.

With my latest that I'm getting ready to send off to the publisher, I've had a bit more problems than usual. A friend who has read all the books in the series offered to read the manuscript and point out anything she found. When she sent it back, I couldn't believe how much she found that I need to address. It's like gremlins attacked it when I sent it over the Internet.

Fortunately, the publishing house has a great editor. It will be interesting to see what she has to say.

Sometimes I wonder why I spend so much time writing, especially when I find so many mistakes. But, what would I do with myself if I didn't write?



cruise maldives said...
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Anonymous said...

I have to agree with 'cruise maldives.'

I know exactly what you mean - no matter how many times you go over something, there always seems to be yet more errors.

I wonder too, sometimes, why I keep at this writing business. It's such a pain sometimes. People ask if it's my hobby or my job, and it's neither. It doesn't pay enough to be a job, and it's too much work to be a hobby.

William Doonan

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Oh, William, how I can relate to your comment. I've yet to make enough money for all the time I take on writing and promoting. I guess I do it because I love it. There can't be any other reason.


Shirley Wells said...

I'm just doing a final read through before the latest goes to my editor and you'd be amazed at the number of mistakes I've found. I listen to it via the text to speech software on my computer and that picks up a lot of my errors.

I've often thought of trying to figure out my hourly rate but I guess it's better not to know. Too depressing. :)

Patricia Gligor said...

Well, I'm sure glad that you write. I thoroughly enjoyed "Bears With Us" and I look forward to reading more of your novels.
I recently joined a new critique group and it's been an eye opening experience. I wouldn't trade them for the world!

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Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Oh, I do agree, Shirley, we'd all be depressed if we added up the hours we work on our books and compared it to what we actually make.

Thanks, Patricia, I'm glad you enjoyed Bears With Us. I had fun writing it.

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naughty moms said...
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Earl Staggs said...

Marilyn, if you're like me and you didn't write, you'd read books by other people and say over and over again, "I can do that."

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Earl, that's exactly right!