Mistakes, Mistakes, Mistakes…
All authors have one writing weakness or another. Here are some of mine:
To apostrophize or not to apostrophize–that is the question, and a frequent mistake I make when I dash off a quickie email or Facebook post and fail to proofread!
Thanks to Sister Mary Cyprian, SSND, I do know the rules, so I’m constantly reminding myself to go back and reread what I’ve written so I can fix these pesky mistakes.
Walking the Dog
This, folks, is what I call “walking the dog” (a term not original to me, but I can’t remember who I heard it from).
These kinds of stage directions go into my first draft, but the second time through, I remind myself that my readers are very smart; they can infer most of these movements, so I cut, cut, cut.
I write Regency romance, so these terms of address come up quite a lot. I always have to remind myself when to capitalize and when to use lower case. And, right this very moment, I can’t recall the rule!
American English and British English are not precisely the same language. (I suppose you could say the same about regional usage in various parts of the U.S., but that’s another blog post.) Thanks to the guidance of a British editor, I have ceased having my characters use “gotten”, “wash up” unless they’re doing the dishes, “taking care” of things instead of “dealing” with them, and countless other American actions. I am a work in progress, though, and always willing to accept correction!
Some great self-editing classes offered by the likes of my fellow East Valley Authors chapter mate, Debra Mullins, have provided helpful guidance in finding my own errors before I send a manuscript out to a professional. Getting all the moving parts right–story, grammar, formatting–can be challenging.
I can’t write a book in one pass. I go through multiple revisions, layering on, deleting, tightening and trying to get the story
write right. See? I even have to do that with blog posts.
And for those who might be in the Southern California area the end of March, Debra will be teaching her self-editing workshop at the California Dreamin’ Conference. Check it out!
This post is one stop on a blog hop, so hop along with my fellow MFRW authors and see what editing goblins lurk in their manuscripts!