This is another article that I wrote for Coffee House Writers. You can find the full article with this link. I hope you find this helpful!
An Editing Process for Pantsers
The 18th of July was the one-month anniversary of finishing my first full-length novel. You may have seen my article “Starting Over: Mirroring Kristin Cashore’s Process Of Writing Bitterblue,” published earlier this month about the process I was planning on using to edit the novel.
Well, plans have changed. I admit I’ve never edited a longer piece of writing before. The editing process is a bit of a mystery to me.
I have read lots of articles about how to approach editing, but few seemed to lend themselves to the way my brain works. Being a panster, a term for someone who doesn’t plot or plan before writing, means a lot of methods for editing aren’t aimed towards your process. Plus, a lot of these methods didn’t tell me how to approach each step. They just gave a basic rundown of the process involved without going into detail.
I ended up cobbling several methods together to get what I think I need for this specific project. I have a general idea of what it needs to improve.
What methods did I choose to include in the editing process?
First off, I wanted to read through and separate the scenes. I placed a hashtag between each of the scenes. Then, I filled out an index card with a couple of questions. These questions were:
- Who is in the scene? I wrote down the names of each character that makes an appearance. I made a note if they only appear for a portion or leave in the middle of the scene.
- What happens? I made a short synopsis of the events in the scene.
- When does it happen? This has three parts to it.
- I included the day number during the timeline of the novel (Day 1, Day 2, etc.,).
- The time of day the scene happens (early morning, morning, early afternoon, afternoon, evening, night, late night,).
- And the day of the week (Sunday, Monday, etc.).
- What is the POV Character’s Goal? What are they trying to accomplish? Do they [Read More]