Saturday, May 16, 2009

Mission #9 – Editing

Mission #9 – Editing

Wow. Where has the months gone?

Here we are at the final stretch of the challenge. The last step is to polish those 25 pages.

I’m sure you all have editing books. I know my bookshelves are weighted down with them. So I won’t go into all the details of editing a book. What I will do is share some very insightful hints that I received on my last two Maggie entries. I’ve found these hints invaluable for helping me fix the “telling” in my manuscript.


Avoid telling instead of showing by eliminating the use of filters. Filtering is when the writer gets in between the reader and the POV character by telling the reader what that character is sensing or thinking. (taken from my Show Don’t Tell article published in the November GRW’s Galley)

Look for sensory words like watched, heard, smelled, felt and thought. When you see them in your writing, ask where the reader is. If she’s inside your POV character, you’ve mastered the art of showing and not telling.

I also hunt for commonly overused words in my writing such as; like, that, thing, turned, feel, had, was and looked.

Finally the most recent addition to my list of overused words is “gaze.”


These are just a few things to get you started down that editing road.

Good luck and keep plugging away. That Maggie deadline is LOOMING!!!


CiCi Barnes said...

Good hints to apply getting our work ready. Thanks, Tami, for keeping us on our toes. We appreciate all that you do to urge us onward and, believe me, it does help.



B.J. Anderson said...

Great tips! I especially agree on the one about not telling the reader what your character is sensing or feeling. I find myself doing this all the time! Grrr. Thanks for the great post.

Sally Kilpatrick said...

Thanks for the tips--Tami and Dorie. I am editing as we speak now that the synopsis is behind me.

Maxine Davis said...


I love your information. It helps me when I read over my work and it helps me understand what people say is wrong with it.

Here's hoping I get it "all fixed."