I’ve never met a writer who hasn’t wanted her reader to get completely lost in the words on the page. While there are many things that separate fact from fiction, there’s one thing that all writers ignore at their peril: a good, hard, honest self-edit. Let’s talk dialogue. Fiction writers learn quickly that there’s nothing as terrible as stiff, unrealistic dialogue to pull a reader out of the story. The first place to start is by cutting out as many dialogue tags as you can.
There has been a debate recently about whether an editing app can or should ever replace a human editor. The answer is a resounding NO. Writer’s need real, actual people to help them develop their ideas and tell their stories. That will never change. But there are some areas where an editing tool can, in my opinion, blow a human editor out of the water. You should think of it as a two step process: use the editing tool to improve the technical elements of your writing so that your human editor is freed up to focus on content and style.
Wendy Strain, freelance writer, ghostwriter, editor, and author, joined the July #BBchat about planning and productivity tips for freelance writers.
Self-editing a piece slated for publishing goes beyond spell-checking your work. These writing mistakes should also be addressed to ensure your writing is clear, vibrant, and effective.
Generic descriptions and recurring sentence structures lead to a rather boring read. Editing with a focus on more interesting word choices and sentence structures can improve your writing and make it shine.