Now that I’ve started to get back into the flow of writing, I’m also going to take some time to do some preliminary editing. Now, don’t shoot me. *LOL* I’m not going to stop writing altogether, but one of my new Facebook contacts is an editor who asked to see a sample of my writing. Of course, I was flattered (and, of course, I was excited), and of course I sent her something right away. I sent her Chapters 4, 5, & 6 (prior to the most recent editing updates) because those are the three chapters that I’ve already paid a lot of attention to and are some of the most mature writing I’ve done on this project to date. It’s also work that I’ve already read a lot at writing groups and I’ve already gotten good feedback on and this made it a good choice so I could compare her suggestions to those that have been made already, something that I suspect should be a fairly reliable gauge of her editing ability. (Since evaluating ideally goes both ways, I should be evaluating her editing while she’s evaluating my draft.)
What she sent back to me after a few days was pretty encouraging. She made some suggestions for the first chapter I sent (Chapter 4) which were of questionable reliability (completely understandable, given that she was deprived of being able to read the first three chapters) and many suggestions which surprised me. She found grammatical awkwardness in a lot of places I had missed (apparently I am a pronoun whore *LOL*) and some of her suggestions showed me where I could be doing a much better job of conveying what’s happening in a clear and imaginable way. As a writer, these can be the most difficult mistakes to catch because the writer knows precisely what they are trying to convey, they know with absolute clarity the scene they are trying to write. Thus, we can never know exactly how readers perceive what we write and how closely it matches what we intend for the reader to perceive. We need lots of feedback AND reliable editors to help us to uncover where our writing fails to paint the picture we’re trying to portray.
So, along with the suggestions she sent to me, she asked me to edit Chapter 4 taking her suggestions into account and to apply those same suggestions to Chapter 5 and Chapter 6 and send them back. She said she would then take a look at how I implemented her suggestions throughout (presumably to see how well I respond to specific suggestions and to see how well I improve my writing overall as a result).
I’m eager to get to work on this since I could possibly have found an editor! How exciting would that be?! 🙂