In celebration of receiving my editorial notes for my latest series Reaping Me Softly, I decided to write about the editing process. Loving it, to be exact.
When I was much younger—centuries ago to be exact—and many times naive, I hated editing. I had the worst mentality any writer could have: Why should I edit my work? I intended to write it that way and it's perfect.
Oh was I so, so wrong, and I'm glad to be wrong.
I used to be so sensitive, taking every criticism of my work personally. It was rough, and a torturous existence since you think everyone is out to get you.
Well, since then, I’ve learned to love editing. I've even reached a point where I relish it. When I'm writing, I'm actually excited to get to the editing part.
Writing is a wonderful experience. It's a high unlike any other. It's like putting a puzzle together and when you're done you get to see the whole picture.
I realized it’s in the editing where true creativity and ingenuity comes in.
To edit is to make the story better. The notes given are for the improvement of what you already have. This is what makes editing fun. Since you already have the story on paper, you get to explore other avenues that you might not have realized during the writing process. You get to explore the "what if" and the "what could be" of the story.
Now, I'm actually more nervous when I'm writing instead of when I'm editing. You see, when I'm writing, I'm not sure where the story will go. But when editing, since I already have the story written down, I'm more confident. The editing process is what gives me the structure I need. The notes given to me by my editor actually guides me in the direction I should go to make the story better.
So, if you're dreading editing your novel, don't. It's the best part of the process. You get to improve on what you have. You get notes that guide you down roads you might not have thought about. Editing is what turns your work-in-progress into a full fledged novel.
So, with that, I enter my editing cave. Please be ready with the floral-scented Lysol when I emerge. It’s going to get funky.