Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Manuscript Makeover Part 4: Final Edits



Last summer, a writer's group invited me to teach a class on editing from start to finish. I designed my manuscript makeover class for them, and I've decided to share it on my blog as a series of posts. This is my fourth and final post in the series.
Today I'll discuss the final edits I go through before I submit my manuscript to an editor for publication. Usually, by the time I've gotten to this point, I've worked out all the kinks in my plot and characters, and I'm ready to focus on my prose.

Here's my writer's to-do list:

Make sure each character has a unique voice.

Add literary devices to build emotion.

Eliminate the passive voice (search for there and was. Give the action a subject.)

Check for sentence variety.

Eliminate wordiness.

Eliminate adverbs.

Search and replace for overused words (Google search: “words writers should delete.”)

Watch for overused prepositions.

Finalize character names.

Read your manuscript aloud one more time.

Spell check.

Search for and replace double spaces.


Thanks for reading! Please let me know if you have anything to add to any of my manuscript makeover posts.


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