Monday, March 7, 2011

More Editing Advice

Monday morning here before work.  I'm doing the preliminary edits on one of Rob's projects.  A very cool project.  I am not at liberty to give details, but it will make something already cool, cooler.  Like I said its Monday morning.  Don't judge the syntax.

Anyway, I am going to use my good friend Rob of a bazillion years as my guinea pig for this short editing advice blog.  I apologize ahead of time to Rob, but like all good friends, I never miss a chance to take a shot.

When you send your manuscript to be edited please do not format it.  Your manuscript should be in the simplest form of single column, paragraphs need to be defined, and for the love of the d20, double spaced.  Now these are easy enough to change, but like last night when I started editing, it took me an hour of my time to untangle the formats and correct the spacing.  Time I could have spent slashing the crap out of his introduction.  Which I did later on.

I did the same thing when finishing my adventure.  I was in a hopping hurry to see what it would look like.  Give your editor a break and format your manuscript for editing.  It's already a thankless job don't make it more difficult.  I've had to (un)format the current project I am working on or I would get an earful from Ivy. 

Please do not have multiple copies of the manuscript in various stages of edits.  This one I am guilty of and Rob and I ran into while editing Points of Light 2.  It usually happens when a writer piece-meals the work to you.  Complete the manuscript before handing it over to your editor.  Some writer/editor teams may have not problem organizing and doing it this way, but for those who can't it can become a huge headache and you redo stuff you've already done and/or a section does not get edited. This kind of situation occurs when the writer is falling behind his deadline or the project was too big for the deadline given. 

That's it.  Have as good as Monday as you can have.  The cars are still frozen here.  Even the snow is frozen, and there was a weird critter under my place making a racket this morning, but I still plan on having a good day.  As the old Amish guy I used to help years ago would say, "Every day is a good day.  Try missing one."


  1. Tim, thanks for the tips. I really like to see the processes on the editing outlined. It is rather helpful to all of us hopefuls.

  2. Yeah I forgot to send the "editing" format version. The damn thing is that I did it for myself. Normally I write it in editing format (double spaced, etc) so I don't forget but for this project the page count was important so I need to keep a running count.

    still learning.

  3. Sounds like good helpful advice, we learn from others mistakes.

  4. That's true, Lurker. And my turn is coming up soon enough when Tim gets a hold of my manuscript. Congrats on passing 400. Very cool.

  5. "When you send your manuscript to be edited please do not format it."

    I'd like to add that this is a good idea for layout, too, to some extent. Marking up bold or italics in MS Word or OpenOffice is fine and expected, and marking headings with standard markup is OK, as are straight tables. But I found out the hard way that Adobe InDesign CS2 did not handle Word or OO format documents with sections, predefined justifications, and some other formatting very well. In some cases, huge sections of text were invisible.

  6. Talysman > I wish I knew all the layout stuff you were just talking about. Something I need to educate myself more on. Thanks for the input.