Friday, 28 October 2016

How Come Editing is So Hard?

After finishing the first draft of my novel and diving right into the stage of editing, I discovered something.

Editing is hard.

It takes time and work.

And it's not the most inspiring thing either.

I love writing. But editing is not writing.

It's not the fun and exhilaration of creating a new world. Of finding gems of truth and weaving them into the story. Of pouring your heart into the life of these imaginary beings of your creation and making them more than imaginary.

Editing is looking at that world, that character, that messy jumble of words that you worked so hard to make, and crying.

And then editing is keeping going anyway. It's sitting there - even though it's hard, and it hurts - but sitting there and reading through that phrasing, that scene, that entire chapter and then rewriting. Deleting those words you worked so hard to make.

Editing is hard because it's tearing apart that thing you took so much pride in, spent so much time creating. Poured yourself into.

It's deleting. Redoing. Trying to stay positive even though those words are just so awful. Eating lots of pizza to keep going. Slogging through a sea of words and keyboard slams and trying to find some sense somewhere.

It's hard.

But it's totally worth it.

If it weren't hard, there wouldn't be that happy satisfaction of having completed something great. Something important. Something challenging.

There wouldn't be anywhere near as much Adventure to it.

I couldn't use epic phrasing like: *draws sword and charges off to tame the word-dragons*

And I couldn't be writing a post about editing while I was meant to be editing...cough cough.

Editing is hard, but it's also necessary. If I never bothered to edit through a novel it would remain the same mess as when it started. Basically, I'd never get anywhere.

Unfortunately, it must be done. But there are perks.

The perks of knowing it's getting better, of all the pizza (virtual and real) good friends give you because they understand (or at least are trying to), the cool blog posts you can come up with while procrastinating, the word-doc formatting that can be fiddled with (aka: more procrastinating), and so much fun stuff.

And having people asking to beta read it is always encouraging. Apparently, even after reading those unedited snippets, they think that it's still worth it. They still want to devour it.

Or there's the doubtful people who simply ask when they can rip it to pieces with a red pen.

I can't say how much it excited me when one of my friends asked to beta read...and my cousin...and several other friends...and my family just ask when they can, not if they can. Because they all know I was going to let them even if they hadn't wanted to.

Editing is hard, but because of it, I have already found so much encouragement in my writing.

Plus, this blog post got kinda side-tracked. But it was about editing in general anyway.

Are you in the editing stage too? (do tell about allll the writing stuff)

|| Jane Maree ||


  1. I'm in the LET'S FREAK OUT BECAUSE NANO IS ON THE HORIZON stage XD. Also I'M BETA-ING MONSIEUR SCATTLOCKE SOMETIMES SOON. Otherwise I will hop down to Australia and nab your manuscript, oh yes *nods*.
    Which book are you editing right now? (MONSIEUR SCATTLOCKE?!)

    ~ Savannah

    1. Ack, Savvy you are the best. ALL YOUR SCREAMING IS KEEPING ME GOING WITH THE EDITING. And yep. It's Monsieur Scattlocke. *can't stop grinning* I'm putting it aside for a while to focus on NaNo but I'm hoping that December will find me newly enthused to edit. :D

  2. I'm no where near the editing stage sadly (or not sadly, I dunno yet xD) I do sorta enjoy going through my old random writings and changing up and/or correcting some sentences and paragraphs...
    I can't really imagine having to do it for a whole book xD (not to mention having to re-write whole paragraphs, scenes and chapters... Ugh, that must be painful to go through!)

    1. Yes, it probably also depends on what your favourite part of the writing process is. Maybe for some people it actually is the editing. Not me though, I love the writing part.

      But as I said, it's worth it. Or it will be worth it in the end. :)

  3. Hey Jane!
    I'm editing my novel Seek! So I'm not doing NaNo, but instead, printing and tackling my precious book... Which I'm enjoying. I'm praying a lot over this book, for Yahweh to show and help and so far, so good! :)
    It can be rough sometimes, but it's nice to know that yes- it's not for nothing. It isn't as dead awful as the demons can try to make us think... When we're finished, we'll have something amazing! :D
    YHVH bless and good luck!
    -Angela |

    1. Wow that's really cool! I really hope the editing goes well and you like how it all turns out! :) *gives you pizza to keep you going*

    2. You too! ;) *gives you pizza too because life sustenance my friend*

  4. I agree SO SO MUCH. Editing is completely different to writing. Like in some ways I find it easier?? Just because I already have the book's skeleton and now I get to make it pretty. YAY. But hard.😂 *goes away to cry for 9000 years* And so many DOUBTS! Like for the first draft it's just "oh I'll fix that later" but now the pressure is on to fix. And. Bury me. BLAHHH. So I basically hate editing, but it is the most satisfying thing in the universe so there's that. MORE PIZZA FOR US ALL.

    1. YES! I keep finding all those places where I just said "Oh, I'll do that in draft 2" and now I have to actually do it. And work out what I even meant with that scene. xD

      Precisely my thoughts. Hard, but satisfying in the end. And more pizza is always the best. :P

  5. I too am guilty of writing blog posts to procrastinate from editing. :P But I wholly agree that it's worth it. Every story has to go through the growing pains of editing and alteration. Such is life! But once the word dragons are tamed, they can fly in such beautiful formation. =)

    Elisabeth @ Inkspelled Faery

    1. I'm pretty sure everyone is guilty of that. :P

      Indeed so. It take effort and time to train them, but the result will be worth it in the end. :)


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