Line by Line Editing
I’m currently doing a major edit of two manuscripts — Ravynwyng Chronicles Universe Volume 1: The Beginning and Ravynwyng Chronicles Universe Volume 2: Discovery. Going through it literally line by line, asking myself what needs to go, what needs to stay, what can be rewritten to make it tighter, allowing a smooth flow. Yes, this is time-consuming, but if you are serious about your work, it’s something you, as a writer, should do.
I’ve been participating in Writers World Boot Camp and have learned a great deal in the past few months. One thing I have earned is what words to search for and get rid of to help tighten the writing and smooth the flow. I still have problems dealing with comma placement, but I am working on that issue.
The following is a list of words to look for and see if they can be removed to cut down on passive writing. I use a program called SmartEdit, which is great for quickly finding these words and going right to the spot in the manuscript to make the change. If these words show up in dialogue, that’s fine, but try and cut them from your narrative as much as possible.
Words to Search for
STAND UP (Redundancy)
SAT DOWN (Redundancy)
SHRUGGED HIS SHOULDERS (You don’t need to add His/Her Shoulders)