Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Revision is Mandatory

I love this woman's podcasts. She is always so upbeat and encouraging. I always take something away with me after listening to her. I encourage you to check her page and podcasts out.

I'm passing this particular one along to you because it is so important. Everyone needs to edit their work. I don't care how good you think you are, you aren't. We all make mistakes and even if you read your work 4 or 5 times, you won't catch all your mistakes. Someone else will find them.

I've done editing for folks here and there for years. In college I did a lot of it for friends. I've done it for friends who write in more recent years. I love doing it but I'm never surprised if I find dozens of problems. I expect it. Writers aren't perfect at writing. 

I always tell people that if you don't like my suggestions, you don't have to take them. Once I edited a short piece for someone and they didn't say they didn't like my suggestions; they simply didn't do a revision. Later I saw a post somewhere by that same person and there were numerous errors. They hadn't edited that either but this was on the web for thousands of folks to see. 

Better to have a bruised ego than to be known as a sloppy writer. Well, that's my motto. To me it is disrespectful to the reader not to make sure that my work is the best I can make it. It still won't be perfect but my efforts will show. 

You know that meme going around that says "if yuo cna red ths"? It looks like a mess but after a second, you have no trouble reading it. Why? Our brains are wired in such a way that when we read something our brains will auto-correct.With writing such as this post, no matter how many times I read it I can still miss something.  Recently, my son said, "Mom, you need to edit your posts better." 

Ouch. 

I always miss something so he's probably right. He isn't a writer but he reads my blogs. He's offered to edit them for me. I'm thinking about it. 

Don't take editing suggestions as an insult. You don't have to agree with them. You don't even have to take their advice. Just remember the person editing is trying to help you become the best writer. Sometimes they may be wrong but it is up to the writer to be sure of that and be able to revise appropriately.

So, get the red pencil out and start wielding it with confidence. Let someone else edit for you, loan them your red pencil.  


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