Editing: When to Edit

Writing can be a long process. That’s why writers get so excited when they finish something that they’ve been working hard on. We can get a thrill when we think about how all of our efforts have resulted in a piece of writing that we can be proud of. Now, however, it’s time to start editing all those important pieces.

This month, we are talking about editing and the editing process. So far, we have examined the importance of editing, what we should look for when we are editing, and some of the ways that we can edit our writing. Today, we’re going to think about when exactly we should edit.

I have already mentioned this briefly. Editing is a separate stage of the process to writing and should be treated as such. Plan, plot, write your first draft, and continue until you reach the end of your final draft. You may now start thinking about editing.

There’s more to it than this, however. Editing isn’t something that you will be able to do if you are in a foul mood, an impatient mood, or if you are not fully able to concentrate on the task at hand. It requires your complete and total attention, and that isn’t always easy to give. Make sure that you are in the right frame of mind to edit effectively – the best way to learn what this is, is to practice.

Another important thing to consider is how much time you will have to edit. You will want to be in a comfortable position, in a quiet place, without disturbances or distractions. You will also want to have a lot of time, in which you won’t have to worry about other pre-arranged plans that might encourage you to rush through the editing process. Remember that the more time you spend on editing, the more likely you are to spot those errors.

Finally, think about how much time you are leaving between finishing the writing stage and beginning the editing stage, as well as between each edit/correction period. It’s no good doing all of these things one after the other – you’ll need time to absorb other things and allow your last period of writing or editing to cool off before you move onto the next stage of the process.


This month’s theme is EDITING. If you have written something that you would like me to share on this blog on the theme of editing, then please post a link in the comments or email me on lauramarieclark1@gmail.com with the subject: Editing.

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3 thoughts on “Editing: When to Edit

  1. I always have such trouble with editing. It’s not that I’m bad at it, I just hate going over my own work and “fixing” it. It just bores me. I really wish I had more patience for it. Any tips?

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    • It is all about patience, unfortunately. I find editing very boring, so I make sure I schedule time to do it when I need to. Then I tend to reward myself with something fun afterwards! I think the important thing is to take it steady and not do too much at once.

      Liked by 1 person

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