• Tag Archives proofreading
  • Honor’s Path (Book 2) Officially Written!

    Only a few days late, but just north of 8,000 words longer than I expected. I will not jump immediately into editing, but this should put me on target for publishing it sometime next year (again, I am going to shoot for November or December). Don’t have time for a longer post now, but there should be one the Monday following Christmas. I ought to have a lot to talk about then.

  • Caring and Research

    So during my trip to Colorado for my brother’s graduation I ended up reading 4 books during the intervals where I wasn’t driving. This is pretty typical of me during travel, since it is pretty difficult to do much of anything else in a car (or plane), and my Kindle always has a backlog of books just waiting to be read. I’m not a slow reader by any means, and tend to binge read, so a stretch of several days can see me devour several books in quick succession without any problem at all.

    Generally I find that most books I pick up have their good points. This isn’t to say I like everything I read. There are certainly books I pick up and feel ambivalent about as I work my way through them, but I’m generally able to understand what the book is and identify why it doesn’t work for me. Often this just comes down to such fickle things as voice, themes, and my mood at the time. People tend to be natural story tellers, we do it all the time, so in my experience telling an adequate story isn’t all that difficult (telling an exceptional one is another matter, however).

    That said there are things I see occasionally that just bug me. It ends up showing that the author just didn’t care, and in every case comes down to a lack of research. This is something I’ve complained about before, though mostly in private, because it is the type of problem that is really easy to avoid. In many cases a simple Google search is all that is required.

    I’m not going to name and shame here, because this isn’t a problem I’ve only seen in that book, however I am going to use examples from it to illustrate my point. Writing is quite difficult, I understand, but I feel that only makes it more important to avoid the simple mistakes.

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  • Better: Enemy of Good Enough

    There are a number of little tidbits of advice I got when I was young that either didn’t make sense at the time, or I never realized I had been given until later. One that sticks out in my mind was a saying I heard an old, retired engineer relate a story about how the designers at the shipyard he worked at were always given a deadline by the Navy, after which they could no longer make improvements to the ship plans unless definite safety concerns were raised. Apparently this was necessary because the engineers were always tinkering with the plans, trying to squeeze out every drop of efficiency possible.

    “Better is the enemy of Good Enough,” he said.

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  • Some Thought On Favored Words

    One thing I noticed early on, back when I was a teen and becoming truly ravenous with my reading, was that most authors have words or phrases they really like. Sometimes it is a particular “verbal tic” they have, other times I think the sound of the word is just appealing to the writer. From my personal experience, I doubt these are ever intentional. They most likely slip in under the radar without the author ever realizing it.

    This is one reason why I take special note of words or phrases that I feel are being overused in my own writing while doing revisions. Typically, early drafts are rife with them, which I hope is not unique to me. Gradually certain phrases/words will fall by the wayside, but they are replaced by new ones almost as quickly.

    Why bring this up now? Glad you asked! As of now my story is through editing and ready for publishing, pending the handling of a few minor details and a final review to ensure nothing slipped through. However, in the final stretch I noticed a few words that I apparently really enjoy using. Here they are:

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  • Book Progress

    Intended to do something else for this post, only to have a whole bunch of things come together all at once. Since this is my first ever push to publish something the process is completely new to me. I’m constantly alternating between this feeling that things are moving too slowly for me to make the deadline I set, and that things are moving so fast I begin to feel concerned that perhaps I am trying to rush this out the door.

    I’m sure a lot of my uncertainty will go away for future books, though experience tells me this “hurry up and wait” sensation is an indicator that a project is nearly finished. Once the book is actually published I’ll probably take some “lesson learned” notes. If it sounds like I’m complaining that isn’t the case at all. Really I’m surprised with how well everything is going, but all of that isn’t nearly enough to overcome the feelings of being lost as I grope my way through this.

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  • Proofreading Tools

    I’m spending today driving home after visiting family for the Thanksgiving holiday, so I didn’t have time to write my usual post. Instead here are some thoughts I had while I was working on getting my book ready for release.

    Proofreading is always a pain in the rear that never really seems finished. Still, I find that simply doing a chapter every day or two helps keep the work from becoming overwhelming. Here are some tools I’ve made for myself to make sure I don’t end up in over my head while fixing things.

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