Mindy Hardwick's Blog

Author Mindy Hardwick Muses about Writing

Editing Weaving Magic

on February 8, 2012

The last few weeks, I’ve been working on the content and line edits for Weaving Magic. (Forthcoming April 2012). I won’t lie. Being edited is both a joy and a curse. It’s fun to see the story polished and shined.  But it can also be a lesson in problem solving when the editor asks you questions that, for a minute, you think the whole story is about to fall apart because the scene doesn’t make sense! Then, you take a deep breath, and look at the scene again and, hopefully, realize it’s a simple fix such as adding one or two lines.

Some of my fixes for Weaving Magic included:

  •  Shantel’s cat appears half-way through the novel and Christopher trips over it. The editor suggested the cat make an appearance much earlier in the story when we first are inside Shantel’s house.  My cat, Cleo, just happened to be sitting on my printer while I was editing. Suddenly, Shantel’s cat was a calico named Cleo who streaks through the living room much earlier in the book. Problem solved.
  •  In the key climax scene, drugs drop out of Christopher’s pocket. My editor didn’t believe it. He wasn’t hanging upside down. How would the drugs just fall out of his pocket? This is where I had a moment of panic…..I took a deep breath and relooked at her notes. She suggested he take out a handkerchief to wipe the blood from Shantel’s arm and the drugs fall out. Viola! A one sentence fix.
  • It’s all in the details. A lot of editing is simply cleaning up sentences, deleting overused words, and making sure all the commas are in the right place.  One of my favorite overused words in Weaving Magic was: “It seemed to be,” and “It seems,” from Shantel.  My editor questioned some of Shantel’s tentativeness. An easy fix and not something I’d noticed with Shantel’s character.

Editors are worth their weight in gold, but as an author, the trick is being able to let go of the story enough to hear what they are suggesting.  The best piece of advice I was given about being edited is that it’s much, much better for an editor to question elements in a story than to hear them from a reviewer once the story is published.

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2 responses to “Editing Weaving Magic

  1. Joanne says:

    Mindy, I can relate to this so much as my book Oh Gad! is also due out in April and I recently went through the line edit process myself. It’s nerve wracking as hell but with a different perspective (among other things) you pick up on ticks you didn’t realize you had such as my apparent overuse of ‘know/mean’ as in ‘you know’, ‘I know’, ‘I mean’ … weird.

  2. Yes! The ticks you didn’t realize you had! And it changes from book to book. The things my editor for Stained Glass Summer picked up were different than Weaving Magic’s ticks!

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