Jennifer Young

Available now from Cinnamon Press

Editing tips - the complete draft

I have just completed a final draft of my second novel, after trying a completely new style of editing. 

First, I did a physical print out of the whole novel and edited it with a pen (As all my creative writing students know, I favour purple ink for editing – red seems too much like a school teacher circling errors!). But this time, rather than print it again, I sent the file to my phone. 

I write a lot in Pages on my iPhone, and I find it very useful to be able to pick it up whenever I have a spare moment. This time, I decided to edit on Pages as well.

The small screen size helped me to focus. I went through making changes and highlighting them – although sometimes I'd highlight something to change, rather than making the change, and by the time I got back to the computer I'd forgotten what I meant to do! 

I edited three complete drafts on my phone, making certain to make all the changes on a clean copy on my laptop. This let me see the changes on both a small and large screen. I feel I had a much clearer editing process this time around. I certainly got through it more quickly as I always have my phone with me, whereas carrying around a 338-page manuscript is less convenient!