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Editing Quirks

So, I'm probably in a small minority of writers here, but I actually love editing. Compared to writing, it is less time consuming. Less confusing. With more focus and concentration attached to it than literally making up everything as you go. When you hit the editing stage of a project, you know that you've done the hardest part: you wrote the book. There is an entire novel sitting there, fully created, just waiting for you to mold it and shape it into something better.

For me, the hardest part isn't the writing. It's the finishing. So when I have finished a novel that I truly want to put all of my effort and focus into, that is an accomplishment. There are many, many projects put on the back burner because of newer projects or due to publishing reasons. While my intentions are pure and I intend to go back and finish about 90% of them, all authors just know which one out of their fifty projects that they're going to put the most effort into at a certain time in their life. Therefore, when I get to the ending of a novel and then turn around and slot it into the editing sequence of events, it makes me very happy.

The other reason I have such a fondness for editing probably has to do with being able to mark up the entire manuscript in bright red. There's just something about reading your own work, doing an immediate facepalm, and being able to mark your mistake right then and there. I like seeing the mistakes, because I really enjoy the feeling of accomplishment that comes from having found them in the first place. I like knowing that even my own work is not exempt from my disapproval. If it needs to be fixed, I'm happier knowing that I was the one to catch it.

One of the other parts of editing that I find enjoyable is being able to work with others editors. When I was just starting out, a group of us each buckled down to help a friend edit her novel. It was a blast. Between the real work of catching stray gender swaps, we were able to joke around and speculate over everything that was occurring. To see so many colors and notations throughout the novel made it a truly signature experience.

Today, my editing is not quite as fun, but I still enjoy wrangling together other editors and putting them in a live-mode type of environment and debate adjustments with them. For this to work, I am a constant and forever advocate of editing through Google Docs if multiple people are to be involved. Which is also why, after the editing of my friend's book, I created another document involving the Editing Etiquette for Google Docs. Though no method of editing is exact, there is a method to help with my madness within that document that I make sure each of my editors read prior to working with me. When you stick to a code of rules while within someone else's document, it opens up the possibilities for multiple interaction and a variety of opinions.

Obviously, by the tone of the document, my focus was directed on those I knew, however I feel these rules would be very helpful for other writers and editors. Especially when you can schedule a time to be in the document at the same time. The possibilities are endless.

So, those are my reasons for enjoying the editing process. I just love taking something I've created and then grooming it into something I will eventually be proud to share with the world.

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