• All,  Editing,  Tools and Tips,  Writing

    a strengths-based approach to editing

    Like most writers, editing is not my favorite part of the job. The work is never-ending and slow-going; the words and moments begin to lose their magic; and I never quite feel like I’m producing something the way I do when I’m drafting. The worst part this go around, however, has been the crippling self-doubt that has followed all my picking and probing and persistent criticism. I’ve encountered this before in editing, and with shorter projects the self-doubt is usually short-lived, but with this novel it seems only to get worse every day as the editing end seems nowhere in sight. Will I finish this book?  Is it good enough?  Is…

  • All,  Editing,  Writing

    what to do when you finish a draft

    So, you’ve finished the first draft of your novel. It’s wonderful and perfect and you feel just dewy about it, right? Right? More than likely, your first draft is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad manuscript, and at this point you may be doubting your ability even to write your name. But fear not: you’ve just finished, in Anne Lamott’s words, a shitty first draft, and that’s something to be proud of, plot holes and typos and question marks and all. Once you’ve gotten over your existential crisis and self-loathing, however, you may be hit with a tidal wave of fear as you encounter the prospect of combing through…

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