Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Writing Tips & Practice: Rephrasing

crumpled paper

One of the most valuable tools in a writer's kit is revision. Any old master will tell you: Writing is only half the battle.

But what is the process of revision? From the highest level to the lowest, it means revisiting what you've written to ask at every possible point: Is this the right thing to say?

Of course, the first place to look is at the idea itself. Does it mean the right thing? Is it worth saying?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Editing Advice: Idiolect

You're probably familiar with the concept of dialect — differences in language patterns particular to a group of people, often regional or cultural. But have you ever heard of idiolect? Your idiolect is how you speak, specifically. It's defined by all the unique ways a single person uses language.

Great writers obviously develop distinctive voices. That's why we can recognize when someone is parodying Shakespeare or Austen or Hemingway or Poe. Those writers' tones were major influences, defining the styles of their times.

All this is to say: Your readers pay attention to how you write. It may be invisible to you, but the words you use or ignore are defining you as a writer. Do you say very or rather? Is your character thin or wiry? Big or large? Do you frequently invert your syntax like Yoda? Do you go out of your way to avoid ending sentences with prepositions?

No doubt, you'll be hard pressed to recognize these idiosyncrasies in your own writing. It's one of those characteristics that's so deeply personal it often takes an outside perspective to point it out, like your gait — and it is often met with disbelief or dismissal. But there are a few ways to get an objective analysis without sending it off to someone for careful reading.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Video: Inside the Edit

This adorably clever video was definitely made with video editing in mind, but except the for the "hours of raw material" line, the message completely overlaps with text editing. (But let's be fair: We could just replace "hours" with "pages," and we'd be exactly on point.)

I love it. Editors, how does this make you feel? Appreciated? Recognized?

How about the authors out there? Does this ring a bell with the editing you've been through?

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014

How to NaNoWriMo: Four Tips

Editwright NaNoWriMo Discounts

Since 1999, National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, has been offering authors and would-be writers an excuse to crank out 50,000 words in thirty days. The restrictions are lax, allowing for any type of novel to be written, as long as the writer considers it to be a novel. Most of the details are left open to the participant, who sets the pace, regularity, time investments, daily or weekly minimums, and goals of the writing. All you have to do to participate is start writing a novel on November 1 and be at least 50,000 words into it at 11:59 pm on November 30. You can even pretend you're in another time zone if you find yourself cramming at the deadline.

The concept is easy, but the execution is often challenging, so here are a few tips to help you writers follow through on your NaNoWriMo commitments this year:

1. It's about quantity, not quality. 

The real goal here is just to write 50,000 words in thirty days. That's just 1,666 and two-thirds words per day. It doesn't have to be great. It doesn't even have to be good. It doesn't have to rhyme or make sense or have a sequel planned. It just has to exist. Yes, technically you can just write "All work and no play makes jack a dull boy" 5,000 times, but come on. That's already been done.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Special Offer for NaNoWriMo

photo credit: Charles Stanford

This year, Editwright is offering discounts to writers participating in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)! The discounts extend to five services:
  1. Planning and preparation: get the tips and tools you'll need to write a book in November.
  2. Coaching and development: personal guidance through the writing process.
  3. Feedback and review: a thorough post-draft critique with recommendations for further action.
  4. Copyediting and proofreading: flawless corrections to make your finished product fit to print.
  5. Book layout and cover design: complete book production services.
NaNoWriMo participants can purchase these services for 5% off, and every additional service adds another 5% off, for up to a total of 25% off the total cost!

This is your chance to work with a professional book editor at significantly lowered rates. Visit our contact page today to send your questions and find out how a professional editor can help you write a book!

NaNoWriMo Special Offer

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