Asking an author for her word count is like asking a woman her weight.
Just look at this list of story categories! Micro fiction–under one hundred words Flash Fiction–100 to 1,000 words Short short–1,000 to 2,000 words Short story– 2,000 to 7,500 words Novelette–7,500 to 15,000 words Novella–17,500 to 40,000 words Novel– over 40,000 words […]
Notice the title of this post is not Does your novel need editing? The answer to that question is YES. Always. I don’t care if you wrote The Great Gatsby of the modern day; your novel needs to be edited.
Despite being the single highest cost of self-publishing so far, the copyedit will be the one expense I will never regret.
That would have been the list if this article was entitled “A single most important thing I’ve learned”. But it’s not, so there are ten more below. Which I guess makes it eleven…never mind! Anyway, after getting eight quotes and four samples from Australian and American editors, I chose Lu Sexton of A Story to Tell to copyedit Shizzle, Inc and I’m blown away with the results. To be honest, I had a lot of reservations about paying for editing. After all I’ve already had a structural edit; I’ve revised the draft no less than a hundred times myself; I speaka English real good. Handing over cash for a promise of making your draft better is scary, even if that promise comes with a professional reputation and an exceptional…
This is a very important topic for writer and editors. I have suffered with some of these issues and had to have surgery on both wrists for carpal tunnel issues. I have also used the Evoluent sideways mouse and it helped quite a bit.
Every book I have worked on seems to struggle in one way or another with internal dialogue. Here are some excellent tips on how write it right. My thanks to Marcy Kennedy for writing this helpful post.
Google and Vocativ recently paired up to investigate which words people have trouble spelling. They released a list of the most problematic terms by state based on search data, and the word grey appeared a staggering twelve times. So is grey incorrect?
Grey and gray are both accepted in the English language. They refer to a color of a neutral tone between black and white, and can also be used metaphorically to convey gloom and dullness. However, gray is the more popular spelling in the US, while grey reigns supreme in the UK. For centuries, the one letter difference between gray and grey has left people wondering if the two have different meanings.
Both spellings evolved from the Old English termgrǣg and have retained their primary definition as a color, but many people have sought to assign grayand grey to slightly different shades. For instance, in his work Chromatography; or, a Treatise on Colours and Pigments, and of their Powers in Painting published in 1835, the chemist George Field wrote that gray “denotes a class of cool cinereous colours in which blue predominates,” while Field reserves grew to describe a more neutral shade. However, such nuanced distinctions are not observed in popular usage today.
EL James’s best-selling novel Fifty Shades of Grey, along with the blockbuster film of the same name released earlier this year, may have contributed to increased uncertainty about how to spell the term in recent years.
Rest assured that when it comes to the tones between black and white, both grey and gray are acceptable spellings in the English language. If you do find yourself trying to remember which side of the pond uses which spelling more often, keep in mind this mnemonic trick: England begins with an e, while America begins with an a.
Almost a year ago, I was privileged to attend the Northwest Christian Writers Renewal conference. One of the sessions I attended was taught by Diana Savage. Her topic was Self-Editing Tips and Tricks. Here are my impressions from that session.
Diana Savage taughtabout Self-Editing Tips and Tricks. She has spent years as a writer and in the editing business, and I could tell that she was teaching from the heart of that experience. Some topics included:
Types of Editing.
Info on Copyright law
Books on Grammar and Editing
Finding an editor
She emphasized the importance of using strong action verbs and avoiding the use of adverbs that end in -ly. Good advice. She also stressed the importance of using active rather than passive voice and careful proofreading. She also pointed out that the gold standard for dictionaries is the Merriam-Webster as is the Chicago Manual of Style for other things.
Both the Merriam-Webster and the Chicago Manual of Style are available in print and have online subscriptions as well.
My takeaway from this session was a reinforcement of the need for excellent editing. You can avoid a lot of editing issues by taking care while you write.
This year’s conference will be May 15-16, 2015. There is still time to register and attend. Here is a link.