You’ve read my opinions on editing and critiquing – the different ways you can improve your manuscript. The multi-published experts agree. Knowing how to edit fiction is as important as knowing how to write it. Here are a couple of highly recommended resources to help you improve your editing skills.
Revision & Self-Editing by James Scott Bell: A systematic approach to revising your novel and making it the best it can be. This unique guide provides you with an exclusive four-draft plan that takes your writing from an organic draft though the rough draft to a final draft, and ultimately a polished story. This comprehensive plan makes the task of revision manageable and helps writers to significantly increase their odds of publication. In addition, the book features specific revision tips geared toward the first read-through, as well as targeted instruction that focuses on the individual elements of a novel like plot, structure, characters, voice, style, setting, and endings.
Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and Dave King. Hundreds of books have been written on the art of writing. Here at last is a book by two professional editors to teach writers the techniques of the editing trade that turn promising manuscripts into published novels and short stories. Renni Browne and Dave King teach you, the writer, how to apply the editing techniques they have developed to your own work. Chapters on dialogue, exposition, point of view, interior monologue, and other techniques take you through the same processes an expert editor would go through to perfect your manuscript. Each point is illustrated with examples, many drawn from the hundreds of books Browne and King have edited.
These are the books most frequently recommended to me – what about you? What have you read that’s made you a better self-editor?
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