When is enough editing, enough?
Years ago, before the age of ‘print-on-demand’ I sought out a fabulous local woman, who edited for magazines and books. She was extremely thorough and transformed my books from my amateur first attempts into ‘professional masterpieces’. However, it is a costly process and, when you don’t make the money back through selling your books, should you do it that way? Is there a cheaper alternative bearing in mind the book still needs to be edited. Can writers do it alone?
Since I’ve discovered ‘Create Space’ I’ve been bolder in editing my work in a different way. I have colleagues at work who love reading and happen to have the best eagle eyes a writer could ask for – in exchange for a free copy once the process is complete of course! Did you know it was cheaper for me to make my unedited book into a ‘print of demand book’ then it was for me to print it out using my printer. The cost was £5 a book and it would have cost me at least £10 in ink if I printed it out myself. Crazy. So my colleagues are passing the book around with different colours they’re using for editing it.
Is this good enough though? I suppose it will have to be. What’s the alternative? Pay £300 and receive half that amount back? That’s not exactly good business sense.
And how long should you take editing a book? Should you rush the process?
I don’t think so – no matter how excited you are. If there’ no rush – don’t rush! Leave it a while, I’m told, and go back to it. I’ve also invested in a nifty book called The Word Diet that has helped me to trim those unnecessary words from a novel to make it flow. I never knew how many times I wrote the same words like ‘really’ or ‘just’. I’ve recently read another new writer’s book and it is filled with ‘slightly this’ and slightly that’. I guess we all have our unseen quirks.
I’ll try this new editing process with my work colleagues and find out if it is good enough. If anyone else does it differently, I’d love to hear about it.
P.S I properly should have edited this artical too! x