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Questions tagged [editing]

Editing is the act of improving a piece of writing. Questions with this tag should focus on specific editing techniques or ways to improve editing skills. If you are submitting a piece for critique, use the "critique" tag instead.

10
votes
5answers
2k views

Rewriting a scifi story to fit with actual science, should I do it as I go?

Rewriting a scifi story to fit with actual science, should I do it as I go, or just write first and make the needed changes while editing? My world exists in my mind, clear and palpable. but I am ...
2
votes
1answer
60 views

What to do if my writer's brain functions in English but my target readers are those of my motherland?

As a reader I have spent far more hours, well... years reading in English than my natural Portuguese mother language. Now that I am writing, in Portuguese, I find myself fishing for words I know ...
1
vote
1answer
129 views

I am planning to write stories - But how do I publish and sell them?

I'm planning to write stories. However I am not an expert in writing or phrasing english sentences. Is there any website which can fix the writing and publish the stories in my name and we can sell ...
6
votes
3answers
122 views

I wrote a book, but changed my mind on the ending

Does anyone with experience have suggestions on how best to go back, edit, and rearrange scenes and details? You know, without me dying in the process? The whole book needs to be restructured.
4
votes
1answer
151 views

MS Word — free or low cost options? Comments/Track changes?

My Office365 subscription expired recently, and I don't have the money now to renew. But I may have a writing/editing gig coming up which involves MS Office. I already have LibreOffice, but I don't ...
4
votes
6answers
173 views

Is it okay to have my family edit my book?

Okay, I don't really have any friends who write. (or in general) And I wanted to know if it was too biased for my family to edit my writing. My mom likes to read my stuff and I let her fix grammar ...
46
votes
10answers
13k views

I wrote a novel, now what?

I'm new here, so, please, bear with me. I had a look at previous answers to similar questions, but my case is (possibly) a bit different. I am not a professional writer, so I wrote this (long) novel ...
2
votes
4answers
335 views

Story content and audience

I have an idea for a novel however I don't know if it is possible as the story line is very controversial and being young I write in a very immature style. This would make the novel very conflicting. ...
0
votes
3answers
85 views

Are lit consultancies just out for money or can I trust them?

I am at the stage where I have edited my novel to the best of my ability. I want a manuscript assessment and have sent off samples of my writing to a few lit consultancies, and have received very kind ...
2
votes
7answers
226 views

Is writing in fragments bad practice?

Occasionally, it feels easier to write individual scenes of a prose and later connect them somehow. Does this method have any significant benefit and/or throwback over the regular "perpetual" way?
33
votes
5answers
8k views

Do I have any control over the grammar of my novel?

English grammar is generally pretty black and white, but there are a few areas under debate. For instance, should a series of three have one or two commas? For example: The coach was black, dusty, ...
7
votes
1answer
64 views

How to use a quote with frequent changes

I am editing a manuscript in which the author frequently wants to change words within a fairly long quote (two sentences or more), and believes that if he does so he no longer needs to put the rest of ...
1
vote
4answers
184 views

Is there a hack to bring out your “true” voice?

I've just approved my typeset manuscript and re-reading the book, I'm aware that it sounds very far away from my internal voice. Whilst it has all of the elements in practice, the colour and fluency ...
1
vote
2answers
102 views

How significant a role have editors played on books published in the past?

I am an editor having difficulties dealing with the representative of an author's literary estate about an unpublished manuscript by a deceased author. We have a polite (and friendly) disagreement ...
2
votes
5answers
135 views

How to: More Words [closed]

I want to be able to have at least 2,000-3,000 words per chapter. But when I finish my chapter outline, it comes to around 1,000 words. I then go back and it is about 1,300 after edits. I want to ...
2
votes
3answers
226 views

Correcting a handwritten manuscript

I used to write on a word processing software, so all the work of rewriting, correcting, editing was easy. Now I'm more and more inclined to handwrite my manuscripts, but all this work of cross out ...
3
votes
2answers
53 views

Copying Certain Information From A Official Website

Hey Guys I was researching on a assignment I have to submit to my university. When i was about to copy certain information i went under the "Terms of Use" seeing if i could copy the said information ...
5
votes
2answers
75 views

Royalty rate for edition of estate-held text

I am the literary executor of my father's estate. A relative has started work on producing a (probably very) limited non-professional edition of my father's 1938-45 war diary. I need to strike a ...
11
votes
6answers
2k views

Is it a bad idea to write and edit chapter by chapter?

I am beginning to write original novels after writing fanfictions and posting them online for about six years. My usual process is: write chapter, edit chapter, post chapter, repeat. This means that ...
6
votes
1answer
80 views

How to interpret editor feedback?

I've just received the written feedback from an editor in a large publishing house. On the whole it's very critical, with the occassional "could be good" thrown in at the end of sections with a list ...
6
votes
1answer
107 views

How much does a manuscript change through publication?

I am currently writing a novel, and I am wondering how much a complete manuscript changes if accepted into a publishing house. I have heard from fellow writers that this may vary from publisher to ...
1
vote
0answers
48 views

English 1101 (1st Year) (Proof readers) [closed]

I am wanting to know if I post an essay, or excerpt from it, or even email someone with the time, an essay (No longer than 3 Pgs) if they would proof read it? Even if it's a simple, It's boring or too ...
5
votes
2answers
515 views

How can I write easier with a learning disability?

I've been writing stories since Elementary School but was diagnosed with a reading comprehension disability in High School. I was labeled as a visual learner. Currently I'm writing articles for ...
1
vote
4answers
700 views

Where to break paragraphs in dialogue?

I'm going through an editing something I wrote and am stuck on where to break paragraphs containing dialogue. I know I need to break when a new character speaks, but I'm not sure where to start a new ...
5
votes
2answers
198 views

How do I fix a text wall when I already have one?

When I write answers to questions on the stack exchange network my end result is often quite lengthy. While length itself isn't a problem for me, sometimes my answers end up like this. This happens ...
5
votes
4answers
422 views

Where would I find a Critique Partner or Group?

Programmers often collaborate over code by using pastebin. They drop sections of code for others to read and assist in improving or removing errors. Does anyone know if a similar app exists for ...
7
votes
4answers
393 views

How do I gain sufficient emotional distance from my work to edit it?

This question was asked by a member of my critique group at the beginning of the month and I've been stewing over it for a while now. I still don't have any better ideas, so I'm turning to you. How ...
4
votes
4answers
118 views

Resurrecting a story: Rewrite or Edit?

I started a book about 2 years ago, got about halfway through, and then got sidetracked. I know this is a typically bad habit of novelists... Fortunately, the book idea that distracted me made it to ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

How many rewrites should a writer expect for a novel?

"By the time I am nearing the end of a story, the first part will have been reread and altered and corrected at least one hundred and fifty times. I am suspicious of both facility and speed. Good ...
6
votes
1answer
260 views

How much humour can you afford to have before losing a serious atmosphere?

Background When I first tried writing fantasy - a long long time ago - I wrote a book that was meant to be really serious and intense. However, I wrote it in a way where the characters joked around, ...
5
votes
2answers
122 views

Has standard manuscript format changed since 2011?

This question was asked in 2011: Do editors still expect Courier font in book submissions for publication? A couple people said they found a monospace font helpful to have space to insert editing ...
3
votes
3answers
43 views

Editing a memoir

A relative (who is no longer living) wrote a number of autobiographical pieces which I would like to publish in a book. They're very good but they need a fair amount of editing. I would like to ...
0
votes
1answer
93 views

How do western publishers react to drafts that are obviously ripoffs of an existing work? [closed]

For example, lets say you were to submit a draft to a publisher that is an obvious ripoff of an existing, popular series (like LOTR). Popular view is that an editor or whoever is in charge of reading ...
16
votes
6answers
2k views

How do I know when my work is ready for critique?

I run a critiquing group once a month and I've had several of my members say they aren't sure how to tell when their work is ready for critique. I'll be covering this in a workshop tomorrow night, but ...
3
votes
3answers
614 views

Ways to avoid repetition of “filler” words in writing?

I wasn't entirely sure how to phrase this in the question box, so it may seem like a duplicate. But, I did look at these questions (What are the tricks to avoid repetition in writing?, How to avoid ...
0
votes
1answer
66 views

Academic books published by university presses: How much expertise do the editors have?

I'm talking about books on specific academic topic, e.g. history of the Aztecs before colonialism, which are published by university presses like the Oxford University Press. How expert are the ...
2
votes
1answer
110 views

Do I write the entire series and edit, or edit the books as I go?

Background Woohoo! The time has come, my first book of a trilogy is one chapter away from finishing. I've done a little editing as I go, clearing up the bad chapters, but haven't properly gone ...
8
votes
3answers
120 views

Where are the best places to hire good editors?

The more I research places to hire an editor, the deeper the rabbit hole goes. I see that previous responses to this question are either, "Ask friends and family for a reference" (I'll pass),or "...
1
vote
0answers
63 views

Help with editing my narrative story. [closed]

I know that this website isnt meant for editing, but my story is a little personal and I was hoping to remain anonymous. This is just a rough draft that might be a little hard to read. The goal is to ...
1
vote
2answers
162 views

Style when intentionally misspelling?

I am copyediting and doing layout on a play that includes a few plays on words and intentional misspellings. At first glance they read like typos. I am wondering if the convention is that I should be ...
2
votes
2answers
281 views

Using capital letters and full-stop in bullet points

This question may be related with this question. I come to the direct point. I am confused with the usage of bullet points. Is is necessary to capitalize the first letter in each bullet point? Also, ...
4
votes
9answers
496 views

How can I keep my writing from being perceived as “too complicated”

This is from a piece I wrote a couple of years back: The sky seemed like a big, large pool of grey smoke. The weather was cool, moist. A fresh, earthy smell hung on the air. I peered through ...
1
vote
2answers
81 views

How should a narrative parenthetical remark be placed in reference to a dialog quotation?

I’m wondering how to place a narrative parenthetical remark in dialog. I’m proofreading a book with a quote that doesn’t look right to me: He whispered, “I think she will have a child in Raspberry ...
11
votes
1answer
336 views

UK vs. US editions of fiction

I am reading a novel the copy of which was bought and published in the US, but the novel was written and copyrighted by a British author and first published in the UK.* Apart from the apparent ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

Has anyone attempted to automate some of the editing process? Specifically to style everyday text towards poetry? [closed]

Some translations surpass the original texts, thanks to the translator. Can a text become more poetic by being re-written into more beautiful language by an open-source algorithm? The algorithm could ...
2
votes
1answer
98 views

Splicing/Mixing Scenes

Remember the end of the Godfather, where they spliced all the different assassinations with the christening? Or any film with good cutting, where they swap between different characters and what they'...
4
votes
2answers
72 views

Structuring a sentence with two phrases qualifying the same ending

For a long time, I have wondered which way of writing the following is correct. (Is more than one correct?) The expected result for integers denotes that a value should be at least a specific value ...
3
votes
1answer
126 views

Editing an Anthology or Compilation

I'm interested in putting together an anthology --a work containing some original material, but also lengthy excerpts and/or full text of previously published material by other authors, from a variety ...
1
vote
1answer
177 views

How to make a sentence seems more legitimate? [closed]

I have the following sentence: Earn Up to $12,000 for Evaluating Code! I am thinking of using this as a headline to entice visitors to enter their email, but most people feel this sentence scares ...
2
votes
2answers
140 views

When Showing Over Telling Becomes Too Extravagant

I recently read the question "What does show don't tell actually mean?" and in the answers, there were a few examples of showing that had extensive description. However, there are numerous websites (...