“One of the really bad things you can do to your writing is to dress up the vocabulary, looking for long words because you’re maybe a little bit ashamed of your short ones. This is like dressing up a household pet in evening clothes. The pet is embarrassed and the person who committed this act of premeditated cuteness should be even more embarrassed.”—
“Books may look like nothing more than words on a page, but they are actually an infinitely complex imaginotransference technology that translates odd, inky squiggles into pictures inside your head.”—Jasper Fforde, The Well of Lost Plots (via thegirlandherbooks)
So I just finished the first draft of my 80k word novel. I've already printed it all out, but how do I start editing? Where do I start?
Congratulations on your novel! It’s a good thing you printed it since spotting mistakes on screen can be a bit harder.
Here are some tips:
We suggest you leave the novel for a while and let it rest. If you did that, you may start editing.
Start from the beginning of the story. If you try to edit a scene somewhere in the middle, you might mess up the narrative arc, so start from the top. Also, this can help you spot some plot holes if there are any.
Make sure the grammar and spelling are correct.
Be an editor not a writer. Remove the extra paragraphs, extra description and unnecessary scenes that don’t help the plot or the character building.
Let it rest for a while.
Ask someone to read it and give you an honest opinion about it. Don’t forget to keep their feedback in mind.
As for the novel itself:
Make sure the plot is clear, and nothing is left confusing unless you aim for that.
Make sure that the characters are whole, emotionally, mentally and physically.
Keep the conversation real, not too long and not too short.
Keep editing until you’re satisfied.
Don’t be afraid if you edit many times. Always keep in mind that the first draft is the most edited one, you might be even surprised by how the story turns out in the end.
Always make sure that you are happy about what you’ve written.
Thank you so much for asking, we hope we answered your question. If you have any further inquiries please do tell. If anyone would like to add something, please tell us. Thank you again. :)