Editing is by now, a well traversed subject on this blog, over the many years I’ve been writing it, I’ve had a lot of things to say and a lot of thoughts on the subject, and ultimately as I’ve grown as a writer, so too has my editing and my thoughts on editing. While it still remains sometimes an almost Sisyphean effort to get the edits done, I’ve learned quite a bit a long the way.
A few weeks ago, I started outlining my novel on notecards that I picked up at the Dollar Store around the same time I went to Bath and Body Works. Along with fall and candles, I’m a very big fan of office supplies and school supply shopping has been a yearly ritual for me for as long as I can remember. For me, there is almost no better mini catalogue during the year than the Office Max/Depot Back to School one in July.
Last year I managed to pick up about 15 or so 1 Subject notebooks that were 17¢ each. I still pick up new notebooks here and there, and managed to pick up three, three subject notebooks, and a sparkly composition notebook that I’ve nicknamed the Leviathan that will include all things related to my current work in progress and the overarching series as I realize there’s a lot that of important details that I need to get set in stone, as it were.
I started doing the outline of the book, using color coated note cards, in an effort to get a visual look at the progress of my novel thus far, which got me thinking about pacing within the story, and looking ahead to the rest of the series. One of the biggest questions one has to think about when it comes to writing a series is, where does this information fit in the over arcing universe that you’ve created. Would, whatever is happening in this particular book be better served elsewhere in the series? It’s a difficult balance, and who’s really to say whether or not a particular topic would be better served later in the series, except that if it doesn’t fit anywhere else in the current book, then perhaps it might be best to hold it.
As much as editing can be a pain, it is also a learning opportunity to really get a good look at what the story is right at this particular moment, and what you think still needs to happen to it.