In-Depth Articles About ... Editing

Should You Ever Edit While You’re Writing?

Should You Ever Edit While You’re Writing?

This post was originally published in October 2017 and updated in August 2020. A lot of writers will say that you should never, ever edit when you’re writing. You can even get software that disables the backspace key or that starts eating your words if you don’t type...

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Can You Edit Something You’ve Already Published?

Can You Edit Something You’ve Already Published?

We’ve been looking at the importance of editing over the past few weeks and, so far, we’ve only been considering editing your work before publication. It’s also possible – increasingly so in the age of self-publishing and digital publishing – to edit your work after...

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Five Signs That You Might Be Over-Editing Your Work

Five Signs That You Might Be Over-Editing Your Work

Editing is a really important part of the writing process – and that’s why we’re in the middle of a four-week series on it. ;-)However ... it’s possible to over-edit. And, if you’re at the editing stage of a project right now, you might be wondering when to stop...

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How Much Time Should You Spend Drafting vs Editing?

How Much Time Should You Spend Drafting vs Editing?

This is the first post in a new four-week series on editing your writing: make sure you're signed up for my (free!) weekly email newsletter so you don't miss the next installment. Whatever you’re writing, you’re going to need to spend some time editing. (Even a quick...

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The Right Way to Expand a Too-Short Piece of Writing

The Right Way to Expand a Too-Short Piece of Writing

One common issue that standard writing advice covers is how to cut down your first draft. And this advice comes up time and time again for a good reason. It’s easy to over-write, perhaps telling the reader things that you’ve already shown them, or using five words where…

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Is it OK to Use Swear Words in Your Writing?

Is it OK to Use Swear Words in Your Writing?

Swearing. Cussing. Strong / bad / foul language. Whatever you want to call it ... can you use it in your writing? Yes. It’s your writing, and you can do whatever you want! Of course, there are reasons you might decide against swearing, or reasons why you might...

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Should You Be Writing Shorter Sentences?

Should You Be Writing Shorter Sentences?

Last week, I tackled shorter paragraphs. Today, I want to take a look at sentences. Whether you’re writing fiction or non-fiction, sentence length matters. Short, snappy sentences (or even sentence fragments) create a very different effect from long, complex,...

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Should You Be Writing Shorter Sentences?

Should You Be Writing Shorter Paragraphs?

There’s so much to think about when you’re writing – and the exact place you break your paragraphs might seem pretty insignificant. After all, the words are what matters, right? Well ... mostly. But the way you use paragraphs gives your work meaning and effect. In...

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Are You Over-Editing Your Work?

Are You Over-Editing Your Work?

Image from Flickr by pheaber Last week's post on The Four Essential Stages of Writing got some great comments, including this one from Ainslie: I must admit that I am beginning to enjoy the redrafting and editing phase of my work a whole lot more since working with...

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