It’s time for my final post for #writerinmotion.
It’s been such a wonderful journey, a large part of which has been the community of support we built together.
And the other part has been the actual work and the outcome.
I’ve written many short stories in the 1.5 yrs I’ve been writing. 21 to be exact. In the beginning I copy-edited because I didn’t know enough about the craft to know just how terrible my stories were. 😂 I knew on a gut level, but couldn’t define it.
As I wrote more, and had to cut down stories for word counts I got better at editing because I had to cut out so much, and still make the story “work.”
Then I began learning about writing craft – about this time last year – really delving in deep. And I began to craft my shorts with intention, and edit with the eye of a developmental editor.
I’ve had CPs and beta readers comment and help my craft along the way, but nothing has been as helpful as this past 7 week process.
I can definitively say, thanks to my fantastic CPs JM Jinks & Thuy Nguyen , other WIM participants, and my amazing editor Jeni Chappelle, SURVIVING GRAVITY is the best version of a short story that I can write at this point in my writing career.
And it was not easy. But I didn’t have to do it alone – and that has made all the difference.
If this all feels daunting, just know that you’re not alone. The writing community is vast and wonderful and so so supportive!
Yes, it’s hard work!
I calculated approximately 10 hrs of editing/1k words of finished draft just for this project.
(10hrs/1k words) x (80,000 words/novel) = 800 hrs of editing/novel.
That’s equivalent to working almost 4 months full time – and this is at least what you’ll put into a novel – probably more.
This is no small thing, and it’s exactly why the final shiny product you read on bookstore shelves looks (probably) nothing like that shitty first draft you just wrote.
So just remember, when you start feeling like your work doesn’t look anything like the wonderful books you read, editing is where the magic happens.
Do your best to learn to self-edit well (you can check out my book on story craft and editing – The Perfect Story – on Wattpad shameless plug).
And there are so many great published books out there.
Make sure to find some good critique partners and beta readers! Twitter and Wattpad are full of them!
And if you can afford it, I highly recommend a freelance Professional Editor. A traditional publisher will provide this service, but if you’re not going the traditional route then it’s extra necessary to hire your own.
Thank you so much for coming with me on this journey, and in Truman Show style, “If I don’t see ya, good morning, good evening, and good night.”
As always, for more #writerinmotion stories and process posts, search the hashtag on twitter, and check out the writers’ websites below!
KJ Harrowick | Jen Karner | JM Jinks | Melissa Bergum | Thuy Nguyen | Kristen Howe | Sean Willson | Paulette Wiles | Talynn Lynn | Ellen Mulholland | Kathryn Hewitt | Sheri MacIntyre | Jessica Lewis | Susan Burdorf | Stephanie Whitaker | Dawn Currie | Megan Van Dyke | SKaeth | Ari Augustine | Fariha Khayyam | M. Dalto | Sheryl Stein | Belinda Grant | Coffee Quills