Editing Tips, Writing Tips

Finding a First Chapter

It’s the second chapter that creeps in when you least expect it. Trying to get to first place. Yes, that’s how it starts. When you realise you jumped straight into the action without a lead in. Who does that? Well… The first attempt is not about being perfect, it’s about getting into the flow. For some reason that means skipping the beginning. If you have ever had this issue there can also be that awkward moment of realising it’s happened again. It can be a hidden blessing because it means you get to rediscover the start. Only this time it’s different. This time it can change.

Knowing Your Flaws

More often than not I find the story began too far in. Oops! The idea rushes around inside for so long. That by the time it’s written the scene has already begun. Like starting a conversation without the crucial detail. If you have ever done this it can be rather difficult to backtrack and explain the missing piece. The good part about knowing your flaws is that it means you can look out for them. A personalised check list can help if you know it’s going to happen.

Make One Change

After the ending is written it can be easier to back and write a whole new chapter. The fun part is laying the ground work and revealing the potential of what is to come. Adding a fresh start is a fantastic way to get reacquainted with the characters. If you are a pantser it can provide an opportunity to include foreshadowing or the odd bit of intrigue. However you start the first draft it can be easier when you already know the end. If you have a story or a favourite book, go back and change one thing. What would it be?

Editing Tips, Writer Thoughts, Writing Tips

Avoiding Editing

No, I am not editing again. Well yes I am, but it’s one of those things where anything can be a distraction. I have never regretted editing. The finished product is always worth the toil. The cringing, the ‘did I really forget to a word how many times?’ I have a habit of leaving out ‘the’ in the middle of a sentence. It’s like a treasure hunt for to find all the lost words. The other habit is joining two thoughts together mid-sentence. If it takes more than 5 minutes to figure it out the sentence gets deleted. What was I thinking? Umm…

Unravelled Plans

The best part is finding out that the story makes sense. You have no idea how of a relief that is. On top of that I went head long into a large scene with many characters. Did that go according to plan? No… Did it cause panic and chaos? Absolutely! Somehow through all this the underlying story made sense. *Breathes a sigh of relief at the small miracle*

Rebellious Characters

It can be rather complicated trying to keep track of that much action. It was fun, surprising and annoying all at the same time. The dragon just wanted to melt snow. The wrong person died. The person who was supposed to be trouble ended up being nice. Don’t ask me how that happened. I have no idea. The best part of editing os reading the story and finding hidden gems that were all but forgotten.

Setting Writing Goals, Writer Thoughts, Writing Tips

Deleting Words

The last couple of weeks I have been setting up a new laptop much to the cat’s amusement. It’s a cheap, easy to use replacement for the old secondhand one. That gave a warning before it was about to die. It didn’t take long for the cat to work out that the keyboard is low and comfortable to walk on. The cat’s favourite button is the ‘backspace’. It cannot understand why I have an issue with that. Needless to say it knows I have a habit of deleting the last two words I wrote.

Habits

Two words, and the writing session kicks in. Not what I was expecting to find, apparently I need an unfinished sentence… Hmm, I will have to think about that. Well what do you know, it works. Everyone has their own quirks and it’s taken a while to find mine. There are so many times when the process has had to stop and start. It makes finding the little nuances critical. It’s like finding that all important first step that leads to another, then another.

Keeping Track

There is nothing quite like keeping track and stickers are not for me. I have a highlighter pen, a calender, and jot down how many words I wrote. Gaps are part of the schedule, but it’s easier to acknowledge them than try and do too much. The cat has claimed half my desk and insists on glaring at me. While purring at the same time when I type away on the keyboard. The look says ‘you should be writing’. I continue because I really don’t want any more words deleted. Thank you cat for being so supportive and taking an interest in my keyboard.