30 years of publishing experience, ranging from newspapers and magazines to
books. The fiction line at Abingdon Press exceeded all sales expectations, and
Barbara has been credited for kicking off a well-rounded series of quality,
highly-reviewed novels. Among her many published works, Barbara is the
co-author of best-selling novel Sedona Storm, as well as the sequel Secrets of
the Gathering Darkness, both published by Thomas. Nelson.
never, ever to turn in a first draft. Some writers think the editor’s job is to
spiff up their grammar, correct misspelled words, change passive voice to
active, eliminate repeated words and phrases, or do laser surgery on their
whether you’re a professional or you’ve made your living on the backs of good
editors. You don’t want to be known as a hack writer.
self-editing chore more enjoyable.
is created by using a form of be, such as am, is, are,
was, were, being, be, or been and followed
by the past participle of the main verb, or gerunds comprised of a present
participle (ending in “ing”) that functions as a noun. Learn more in Hacker’s Rules
for Writers. Search for these words and recast your sentences to make them
more active. Examples:
the cliff into the river below to escape.
cliff into the river below to escape.
clutter up your writing. Sometimes I think writers use them to boost their word
counts. Examples: begin, start, started to, almost, decided to, planned to, a
little bit, almost, etc. Examples:
bit out of place among the nouveau riche.
place among the nouveau riche.
easy to spot. You can drop them and no one will notice. My high school English
teacher told me that if you could replace the word very with the word damn,
you didn’t need it. Other examples: really, well, so, a
lot of, anyway, just, oh, suddenly, immediately,
kind of, extremely, etc. I’m sure you can come up with your favorites.
let’s retire to the drawing room and just stay out of his way.”
“Let’s retire to the drawing room and stay out of his way.”
adverbs, but they “usually” are unnecessary, especially in dialogue tags. Your
prose should communicate a character’s state of mind without using a tag line
such as the example below. Use search and find to look for an ly followed
by a space or a period.
said ferociously. (Really?)
If you can understand the sentence without it, you don’t need it. You notice I
didn’t write, then you don’t need it. Both of these words are over used.
involves self-editing. It’s your job to turn in the cleanest manuscript
possible to your agent or editor. Use the search-and-find tool to speed up the
search-and-find feature in Word to edit your work?