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Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

These lessons, by one of our most consistent FaithWriters' Challenge Champions, should not be missed. So we're making a permanent home for them here.

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lish1936
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Re: Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

Postby lish1936 » Sun Apr 27, 2014 10:10 pm

My brain is like a bowl of scrambled eggs when it comes to quotations marks. I know the general rule, but I thought since the whole sentence was a question, the question mark belonged outside. Now that I made that mistake, I won't forget it. :-)

Thanks,

Lillian
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I write even when I think I can't, because I must. :-)

I love to write. Nothing escapes the crush I have on the written word. I'm hooked on words!!

"Let words bewitch you. Scrutinze them, mull them, savor them, and in combination, until you see their subtle differences and the ways they tint each other." Francis Flaherty

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Re: Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

Postby CatLin » Sun Apr 27, 2014 10:37 pm

Lillian, after reading your post, I realized I do also give and receive advice based on the challenge rating categories. I always go down the list in my head and ask my husband, after I've read a story out loud - did it begin well? did it end well? did it make sense? in addition to correcting typos. He gives good feedback. :) And just yesterday I gave advice to a writing buddy about an ending - not giving specific changes but what was strong and/or weak.
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Re: Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

Postby lish1936 » Mon Apr 28, 2014 6:55 am

Thanks, Catlin. I don't want to usurp Jan's thread, so maybe I'll start another topic. "Honor system" has meaning for me, but I can only break the rules if I know what they are. Right now, they're unclear.

In 2011:
Deb wrote:When acting as a buddy, use the judges' rating categories to help pick up the weaknesses and strengths of each piece.


Lillian
E-Book - Retirement Lane - How to Celebrate Life After 60

Fortunate 500


I write even when I think I can't, because I must. :-)

I love to write. Nothing escapes the crush I have on the written word. I'm hooked on words!!

"Let words bewitch you. Scrutinze them, mull them, savor them, and in combination, until you see their subtle differences and the ways they tint each other." Francis Flaherty

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Re: Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

Postby glorybee » Mon Apr 28, 2014 7:52 am

I'll get clarification from Deb as soon as possible. When I posted originally, it was from memory. My memory may well have failed me. Stay tuned.
Jan Ackerson

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Re: Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

Postby lish1936 » Mon Apr 28, 2014 7:57 am

Oops! I didn't want to take over the original topic for your thread, Jan, so I asked the question in the Buddy Thread. But I will stay tuned for all answers. :-)

Lillian
E-Book - Retirement Lane - How to Celebrate Life After 60

Fortunate 500


I write even when I think I can't, because I must. :-)

I love to write. Nothing escapes the crush I have on the written word. I'm hooked on words!!

"Let words bewitch you. Scrutinze them, mull them, savor them, and in combination, until you see their subtle differences and the ways they tint each other." Francis Flaherty

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Re: Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

Postby glorybee » Mon Apr 28, 2014 8:15 am

Okay, here it is, straight from Deb:

The initial idea and writing of the entry still needs to be by the individual member. However, in a complete reversal to everything we've said until now, after the initial writing has been done (and self-edited), members are encouraged to work with their buddy group to fine tune their entry and hone their skills.

Please note: Professional editing is still off limits.


It will be up to you and your conscience to determine how much fine-tuning you're comfortable with and still consider your entry your own. My recommendation--and this is not an official edict, just personal preference--is that less is more, beyond mechanical edits.

I apologize for the misunderstanding!
Jan Ackerson

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Re: Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

Postby lish1936 » Mon Apr 28, 2014 9:51 am

No problem, Jan. Even in the area of "self-editing," I think we could consider that a misnomer should we resort to using many of the internet tools that address more than the mechanics.

Perhaps we could call that self-editing with the help of an internet "buddy." :D

If you think it necessary, maybe you might post your response on the Buddy forum.

Blessings,

Lillian
E-Book - Retirement Lane - How to Celebrate Life After 60

Fortunate 500


I write even when I think I can't, because I must. :-)

I love to write. Nothing escapes the crush I have on the written word. I'm hooked on words!!

"Let words bewitch you. Scrutinze them, mull them, savor them, and in combination, until you see their subtle differences and the ways they tint each other." Francis Flaherty

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Re: Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

Postby amilli » Thu May 01, 2014 5:04 pm

This is truly an insightful lesson. I agree with having someone else edit, but sometimes when you have to meet a deadline and there is no immediate eyes around within the needed time frame, then self-editing is the second runner up! These tips help. I've heard about reading backwards, but never by paragraphs. (I'll try that next time.)

Is it me, or does anyone else experience "Over-editing??" :oops: What I mean is not necessarily re-reading a dozen time, but rather adding commas & colons etc where they're not needed. Or taking out words, phrase, sentence that was perfect...then having to revert to the original. The occurences are rear, but sometimes too much self-editing does a lil bit more harm that good (That's my weak spot right there... using "Cliches!") :cry:

Also, I think it's best to take breaks during self-editing in order to stay alert. Personally, after re-reading two or three times, I get hasty. Then I start rushing through the process, whether I'm reading aloud or not, inadvertently missing errors.

Great lesson Jan!
Amelia

My writing is a passion, not a hobby!

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Re: Be A Better Writer--Self-Editing

Postby WriterFearNot » Thu May 01, 2014 11:46 pm

Oh Amelia,

I am guilty of over editing, changing a piece so much that the very heart of it becomes unrecognizable, and the rawness and the edge have disappeared.

So yeah, good point. Self-editing=good. Too much=not so much.

Theresa

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