The funny thing about most authors is that most of us aren’t writing full-time.
That might be the dream for some, but a lot of us have and enjoy regular daytime jobs that help support us and family.
For 6 years, I have worked as a marketing and communications professional in academia. I’ve held multiple job titles, from social media manager to convergence media manager. But what most of them boil down to is experience with writing and editing copy for lots of materials, including magazines, articles, video scripts, social media, and more.
Here are 3 tricks I’ve learned in that time that have helped me in the editing process for my books. Hopefully, they might help you out too, with your own books or works!
Read it aloud.
Reading a passage or work aloud helps you as an editor to imagine how the story flows when someone is reading it, either verbally or mentally. It’s a great way to catch grammatical errors or sentences that don’t flow well.
Read it more than once.
I’ve been told time and time again that it takes at least 3 rounds of editing to fully proof something. If your book is 50,000+ words, that takes a lot of time. That said, I think it’s time well spent.
Coming across a typo in an otherwise stellar book can dampen your fire quite a bit. Most readers will forgive small things, but multiple errors can turn a reader off quickly. No matter how gifted a writer you are, it will usually take more than one or two rounds of edits to catch the majority of mistakes in a manuscript.
Have somebody else read it.
I’ll be the first to admit that it can be downright embarrassing when somebody else reads your work and points out an obvious typo. But as long as they aren’t rude about it, they’re doing us a huge favor!
Sometimes we get so emotionally tied into the work that we gloss over things that might be problematic grammatically or thematically. This is why it really helps to have a neutral party read over it; a fresh pair of eyes can not only find errors but might provide additional valuable feedback on what makes sense or doesn’t to somebody who is unfamiliar with the subject.
Have you tried any of these tips before? What other editing tricks have you tried?