Self-editing is a double-edged sword that will certainly test not only the mettle, but the integrity of an author on many levels.
To self-edit your own work, you must be prepared to be your own best and worst critic.
That means reading your work over and over to the point where you can see the words dancing in your head when you are doing things not related to your editing.
When that happens, you will see the good, the bad, the ugly, and the otherwise that you feel needs to be changed and/or altered within your write or writes.
For myself personally, I have self-edited multiple times, only to see and realize that I STILL needed more work. Granted, this is my personal experiences with self-editing, yet I have come to learn and grow from those personal experiences.
Trust me when I say that ending ALL sentences with either a noun or a verb is indeed a daunting task in the realm of self-editing. Words WILL run together. Words WILL start to look funny.
Even worse, your wording will look SO ALIEN, you would swear that when you write AND speak (IT DOES HAPPEN), you will look at yourself in a mirror and hallucinate about wearing clothing from the Renaissance Era with the way your speech has been affected by editing your own work.
Maybe that is just me…
Regardless, to self-edit your work is a tough road to traverse because of the lack of one critical item that is very necessary in the realm of a great read: A Second, Third, Fourth, and Fifth Opinion when doing a book edit.
Of course, this is completely up to the author if they wish and desire to look for a second opinion or more. What I can say in this regard I sincerely hope will be taken to heart and into great consideration:
You WILL need that second, third, fourth, and fifth opinion. You WILL need those eyes to help with your editing of your work. The reasoning is very simple:
Fresh Eyes See Everything.
I am thankful that I seek out as many opinions as possible so that my work is the best that it can be when it is presented to the public. The opinions from friends, colleagues, family, associates, and the like have been, and will be, very instrumental as you all look over your work and see the tiniest errors ranging from comma misplacement, misspellings, misuse of italics, to fractured sentences and inappropriate uses of words to get your points across to others in your book.
I cannot count the number of words used by other that seem to sound correct, only to turn around and find out that it changed the demographics of the sentence completely, thus creating a rather nasty taste in the mouth of the author and their audience.
At the end of the day, seek out those opinions and become a Great Author.
Self-Editing: The Bane of a Writer’s Existence
By Andrew Boyd
Latest posts by Radu Balas (see all)
- …we have helped hundreds of authors - Oct 20, 2017
- The 50+ Places Where You Need to Promote Your Books – Book promotion ideas - May 15, 2017
- Grim Commonsense: advice from FOR WRITERS ONLY - Nov 4, 2016