Vocal Editing and Singing Cats

Only a week and a half before the trip now, but a few more things achieved.  I’m starting to think that I might actually get everything I want done in time for the trip, rather than just the things I need to get done.  That would be nice, particularly as it would delight more than just me.  You know who you are.

Last night, I finished my final round of editing on Bound before I leave.  This was the second time I’ve done the out-loud edit on that manuscript, but it needed doing because of the significant reworking of several sections and addition of a few others.  This now seems to be my final step before a manuscript goes to test readers.  Yes, I still caught a couple more typos.  Do the buggers ever stop? How do they manage to keep creeping in?  It’s like playing whack-a-mole, I swear.

So what does that mean?  That it’s time to do the same on Possession.  This is the first time I’ve done the out-loud edit for this book, and I’m catching a lot of little touches, just as I did the first time I went through Bound, so I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.  Typos, yes, edits where I missed deleting a word out of the old sentence, certainly, but what I find is best about this method of editing is that it also catches a LOT of repetitious word usage, awkward choices, and where sentences make sense but are entirely too long or convoluted.  Or worse, both. 🙂  That’s why I’m doing it again, though it’s a lot of reading out loud and the cats keep trying to sing along.  Apparently they have no appreciation for literature. Oh well.  If I’m going to give Possession to my test readers on my trip, in addition to the new version of Bound, I’m going to need to complete this in a week.  As long as nothing needs major reworking, I think I can do that, but we’ll have to see.  I’ll keep you posted on that.

I’ve had a few more ideas for Necromantic, both the trilogy as a whole and book 1, but not a major amount.  I’ve been a bit focused at the moment during my at-home time working on getting Bound and Possession ready, so I haven’t really turned my brain over to it for any lengthy period of time.  There’s time though, including while I’m away I suspect.  To be honest, after the brain explosion at the meeting, I think my creative mind needs a bit of a recharge anyway.  I will admit, the couple of things that I thought of were kind of juicy, so I’m moderately mollified.

I think the biggest problem right now is just that I am so all over the place with preparations for this trip and thoughts about it in general.  I’m only gone for two weeks, but it’s been almost two years since I’ve been back and I’m looking forward to seeing my family and friends.  I’d never give up living here in Vancouver, but I miss them all so much anyway.  I’m trying to convince a few of them to move out here, but I don’t think it’s going to work.  I’m almost tempted to suggest that it means they don’t really love me and pout, but I know them, they’d just laugh at me and then I’d bust out laughing.  Bullshit makes me laugh, really.  I think it’s my sarcasm and cynicism muscles reacting that does it every damn time. 🙂

This picture is one that I took for a number of reasons.  I watched these particular plants grow and expand but was totally not expecting the shapes within shapes thing that they had going on.  It’s a little fascinating in my opinion. Also, it’s just pretty and sunny.

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About Julie

I'm a writer and photographer. I always have something with me to take notes for ideas or writing projects I'm thinking about or have on the go. I also like to go around with my camera and take pictures of anything that strikes me as beautiful or evocative. I'm perpetually working on one story or another, while waiting for enough distance to judge the last one (or more). I'm always working on several projects at once, developing the next book, even as I'm editing the last. Beyond that, there's always plenty of scraps and twists of ideas rolling around in my head, eventually turning themselves into full blown stories.
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19 Responses to Vocal Editing and Singing Cats

  1. jmmcdowell says:

    I’m a huge believer in reading the work aloud. Isn’t it amazing what your voice will catch that the eyes missed? And it’s sooo important to do for dialogue! If only the cats could help with the reading instead of just singing along…. 😉

    • Julie says:

      I agree about the things your eye misses. Never ceases to amaze me.

      And if my cats could talk, they’d just sit around and ask me to feed them. All. Day. Long. 😮

  2. 4amWriter says:

    I swear by reading my stuff out loud. Not only do you catch typos or wrong word choices or grammatical errors, but you also can hear the rhythm. I wouldn’t say I’m a lyrical or a poetic writer by choice, but sometimes when I get going I get into an unconscious rhythm, beat, tempo, whatever you want to call it.

    These are the moments when I say fragments are fine, as long as they work with the flow of the words.

    • Julie says:

      That’s true, and you can also hear the rhythm of the story too, I find, not just that of the sentences. That can also be important, I find, as it lets the reader just flow along with it.

  3. subtlekate says:

    I am very interested in our outloud editing process.

    • Julie says:

      Well, my general view of writing process is find the one that works for you, but try just about everything (*that’s legal), because you never know what will work best for you until you try it.

      Out loud editing is really just opening your word document and reading the story out loud. I just needed a decent phrase to talk about it with. You would be amazed the things you catch with it, and I find that it always makes my manuscripts better when I do that at least once before sending it out to test readers.

      • subtlekate says:

        That’s a fanastic idea. I read aloud for the tone, but why didn’t I think of editing along the way. And it’s legal 🙂 Thanks so much.

        • Julie says:

          You’re welcome. I can’t claim credit. I know I got the idea from somewhere else, though for the life of me, I can’t presently remember where. I think I do the edit along the way because, well, my inner editor is a bitch who won’t leave me alone unless I’m writing draft at NaNo pace… It’s a problem. 😀

          • subtlekate says:

            Editing is my drug. I am addicted. I’ve promised myself I will move on with the work rather than the constant editing. LOL I brake my promise often.

          • Julie says:

            I go in cycles. I wrote a first draft in November, a second draft in December, spent January editing and planning my second book. February I wrote it, March was edit and plan the third book for a while and wait for test reader feedback, then it turned into writing the third book which I finished almost two weeks ago. Now I’m editing again and planning the next trilogy. I suspect I’m going to be writing again by June at least.

            I think I’m just addicted to writing. Oh well, way worse addictions out there. And this is definitely one of the legal ones. 😀

  4. I have written many documents in my professional life and always go away and read them out loud, it’s so useful to do so! Well done you on progress!

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