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Postby Neurolanis » Sun Dec 24, 2006 10:09 am

Just finished typing off my book, finally! Now I can get to work with the editing/rewriting. This will be my first time doing this. I'm not sure if it will be fun or not, but I'm eager to get started. 71 long chapters. Yikes. :lol: I think I will rewrite first, then check for spelling and grammar. I've been advised to get an editor, but at this point I couldn't afford to pay for one, and I'm not sure that path appeals to me.
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Postby Chaeronia » Sun Dec 24, 2006 12:58 pm

Hello, Neurolansis.

Well, I have no experience in achieving such an accomplishment, so all I can do is congratulate you on completing a seriously difficult task (at least to my mind). I hope the rewrite and editing goes smoothly.

71 chapters? Yikes indeed. I'm almost tempted to say 'crumbs'. It's not really relevant, but I'm always curious: how many words/pages have you scribbled in total?

Well done, Neuro, and good luck.

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Last edited by Chaeronia on Sun Dec 24, 2006 1:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Bmat » Sun Dec 24, 2006 1:06 pm

Good luck, Neuro!
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Postby Ariel » Sun Dec 24, 2006 3:04 pm

Good Luck Love! :D
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Postby aldan » Sun Dec 24, 2006 6:17 pm

I've been advised to first do some personal trimming of the piece, then fix the misspellings and grammar problems you run into while doing that. After this, then you should have a friend who enjoys the genre in which you're writing go ahead and read it and then have that person critique it. Have them tell you what the story was about, what they thought worked well and what didn't work well. They will likely also find some grammar and spelling problems that you may have missed. Sure, it's not a professional editor, but it will give you an idea of what you should get rid of and what you should keep.

Really, though, with regards to submitting a piece of writing to a publisher, they expect to do some editing on the piece. The reason to do as much as you can yourself before submission, though, is that you want to make a good impression on the publisher to give them the impression that you are a complete writer and not simply a storyteller. That's my opinion, and I'm sticking to it.
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Postby The Master » Mon Dec 25, 2006 1:39 am

:cheers: Grats Neuro! Hard work pays off

I agree with Aldan, have a (patient) friend you trust to be totally honest with you read it. Do not give them any background or coaching, it should be just like they bought it from a store and have no idea what it will be. The feedback you get from such a reading can do wonders.

My initial reaction is that, unless they are very short indeed, 71 chapters sounds quite long (I believe the entire Lord of the Rings series is 66 chapters long). Are you planning to offer this as one novel? Or as a series?
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Postby Neurolanis » Mon Dec 25, 2006 7:25 pm

Thank-you, Chaeronia. I don't have that information with me, as I am at my parents' house at the moment, but I believe a friend told me it works out to be two thirds the length of the Lord of the Rings.

Thanks Bmat and Ariel! :D

Ah, well Aldan I am planning on the same thing; trim first, then do the spelling and grammar. I am going to research agents and make a list of ones I like, and call them if I can, tell them my story and see who seems to the most interested and send them a copy. The agent might have an editor of his own, perhaps.

That's good, The Master. But I like keeping 'the veil' on the art until it is done, and it seems like bad luck to me to show it to anyone but an agent or editor before it is published for some reason. :lol: Um, I wrote it as a single novel, but due to its size I think I will offer the suggestion to the agent or/and publisher that the first two parts could comprise Book One, and the third Book Two (as Part One is only 100 pages and quite shorter than the other two. Actually it's like a long prologue to the rest of the book, and would not do well as a book without Part Two to back it up, I feel.)
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Postby Grand Evander » Tue Dec 26, 2006 4:14 pm

You know your work best, Neuro, and are therefore certainly the best one to judge how to divide your story. Professional readers can be really expensive and often charge by length / reading time. For 71 long chapters, this could amount to quite an expense. Such readers ask specifically what sort of comments you want them to give, so you may get very limited feedback in addition to a general reaction. Also, there's no guarantee that their advice, if taken, will make your work more marketable.

Something else to consider: copyrighting. It's true that a work is automatically the intellectual property of the writer but usually, if the work is not legally copyrighted, the writer can only sue for nominal damages in court for theft, and not punitive. This is at least the case with works in the US that are not registered with the USPTO.

Agents can offer very good suggestions for revision if you submit to them a manuscript. True, as with all advice, it shouldn't be accepted without some level of skepticism, but such advice comes from people who represent actual writers. When they reply to a request for representation, they sometimes give comments as to why they chose to pass. This is not necessarily the best or only way to get a critique of your work, but it is something to consider. My problem with having friends read my work is that they'll be more reluctant to tell me the negatives of my story after hearing I've spent years working on it. I prefer having people who have no predisposition to liking or hating my writing to read.

I also offer a bit of caution when it comes to revision. No piece of work is ever finished, in my opinion, and it can become very tempting to just keep editing because you feel you can keep improving your work. Set a goal for yourself or a certain level of expectation that, when met, you will start to consider representation.

*Hope this is helpful.
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Postby Neurolanis » Sat Dec 30, 2006 9:19 am

Thanks GE, great to hear from you! :D I understand what you're saying and agree. I will do the best I can to prepare it for the agent's eyes, and so hopefully the publishing process can begin. I know, sigh, it will likely have to be revised several times...
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Postby aldan » Sat Dec 30, 2006 3:25 pm

Personally, I strongly doubt that any modernly published book has ever only been revised or edited one time. All too often, the editing is cut off too soon, or so I think in seeing the 'high quality' of spelling and grammar that I've noticed more than once in books I've recently read....
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Postby Neurolanis » Sat Dec 30, 2006 3:42 pm

Phew. :lol: Yeah, even I notice bad spelling and grammar in books lately too. But some of it might be typos. I think that a copy-editor hand-types the entire manuscript off for the version to be published, unless I am mistaken.
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Postby Magus » Thu Jan 04, 2007 10:21 pm

Great job, Neuro!

Now, what I've been told/read (and have myself practiced) is to take some time off before editing (at least from what you plan on editing). Space yourself from it. Become detatched. Allow yourself to become objective and able to subject yourself to hard edits and even harder cuts. You've just come off of the incredibly personal and emotional deal of writing; what's best is probably a short break to cool yourself off. A month (give or take) is usually about what I hear. I heard starting on some short stories is preferable. I myself went strait into another lengthy work of fiction when I did it.

At any rate, no matter what you do, congradulations! A wonderful way to end an old year, I'm sure!
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