- The Necessary Evil of The Editing Process -
It’s always the waiting that’s the absolute worst. As writers we all know that feeling, don’t we? After the many, many man-hours, sleepless nights and caffeine binges, you’ve finally reached the point with your masterpiece where it's ready to be scrutinized. You’ve done your creative best and now comes the hard part: The Editing Process. This is the hard part for so many reasons. This is the part where you lose control…and you may not like it, but you do have to allow it. As an artist, the loss of creative control, even if only temporarily, can be tough, especially for writers a.k.a. natural-born control freaks. Then there is the actual handing over of your manuscript to another pair of eyes and another set of hands. Eyes and hands that will be putting your masterpiece beneath a hot light and a powerful magnifying glass, chopping away at it…changing it…twisting it and turning it…flipping it inside out and even burning it a little bit. But… as agonizing as this entire process can feel, it’s all for the greater good. This entire process is meant to make your manuscript as polished and as perfect as possible.
Personally, as a writer who is as impatient as the sun is hot, the editing phase has to be, by far, the toughest part of the publishing journey. I can remember as a freelance journalist how tough it was waiting for the edits on a 750-word article. So, waiting for someone to edit a 70,000 novel is a whole new animal to catch and tame. I can remember when I had to relinquish creative control over my debut novel, BAD INTENTIONS. I was forced to wait for my editor to come back with the good, the bad and the ugly about my creation. I have to admit, it’s a nerve-racking process and the most you can do is try to stay busy by focusing on the other aspects of the project like marketing (more to come on marketing in later posts). You can also begin working on future projects and catching up on those long-neglected household chores. At the end of the day, as much as I despise the editing process (is despise too strong of a word? No, I think it fits just fine), I do know how critical it is for the success of any writer.
So with a little twist on the old saying “Practice makes Perfect”, I pay homage to the necessary evil of The Editing Process by saying:
“Patience Makes Perfect!”