Hi! I’m Ivy Reddington. Well, actually, no, I’m not. My real name is a secret for privacy reasons… At first, I actually didn’t want a pen name because I felt like it would be really weird and hard to get … Continue reading
Good writing, as a craft, starts with a rough piece that needs sanding, polishing, and a good coat of lacquer before it shines. The skills you must learn to edit your own writing are not difficult, but they are critical. Here are a few tips and ways of thinking that will help you hone your work into a useful and beautiful piece.
Changeup – The best way to read your own writing critically is to change the circumstances when you edit. Start and end your editing process by reading your piece out loud. If you write on a computer in the quiet of your office, print it out and take it to a noisy coffee shop. Pay close attention to the rhythm of language as much as the topic itself as that will help put you in your reader’s mind.
Audience – Verify that you are speaking directly to your audience before you do anything else to edit your own writing. Read your piece with a clear vision of who it speaks to and why the topic you have written is important to them. The reporter’s five Ws – who, what, when, where, and why – should be clear and stated up front, usually in the first paragraph.
Reading is Writing – The reader of your piece must decode language into a clear image. The process they use is very much like writing itself. When you edit your own writing take a step back and read it as if someone else wrote the piece. Does it flow? Does it engage the imagination? Clarity, not cleverness, marks the strongest and most memorable work.
One Topic – The strongest pieces are going to be about one thing only. Examples that inform that topic from a different perspective can work, but they have to be directly related to what the piece is about. Before you edit with a detailed eye be sure that your subject is well covered and is not diluted by unrelated topics.
Brevity is the Soul of Wit
Active Voice – Once you are clear on the major issues, you can start paying attention to detail. Conversational writing in blogs naturally tends…[Keep Reading… Edit Your Own Writing.]
So, I have hit writer’s block many times while writing my dystopian novel and now I want to share how I broke it. But before I get into solving, let’s talk about the reasons and then a solution to each … Continue reading
This may seem odd, but I really don’t like it when fiction books have pictures of real people on them and here is why: I feel like a book should leave enough to the reader’s imagination. Describe the characters, but … Continue reading
My friend Skye has been reading my novel-in-progress as I write each chapter. She is only four chapters into it and I just created a list of questions to ask her to get the maximum amount of information out of … Continue reading
Naming your characters can be tough, or it can be the easiest thing ever! It depends on the character… Two of the main characters in my novel, Claire and Keagan, I had trouble naming. Originally, Claire was going to be … Continue reading
I love reading and writing, but am kind of new to both… For the longest time, I hated reading and writing in school. Reading was just plain boring and I never seemed to understand the writing lessons. But thinking of … Continue reading