It will eat your life, it will also yield fun toys like this, The Writer’s Diet, posted in r/writing by blue_teapot. Apparently even my rough drafts are pretty lean. I’ve been murdering “that”, “there was”, to be verbs in general, and “started to” from my other works with fervor. It seems that all my editing is producing better first drafts, because I notice those words now, and if possible, I avoid them. If not, I just say “I’ll fix it later” because I try not to putter on the rough draft.
Speaking of editing, we’ve all scanned the basics like a gagillion times. It was after I was scanning Excessica’s Editing Guidelines that I finally went on a witch hunt for certain words. For instance, that last sentence was terrible. Let’s try it again: Scanning Excessica’s Editing Guidelines, the basics really stuck and I went on a witch hunt for certain words in my writing.
I also got myself excited for 30 seconds thinking they were open for submissions again, cuz talk about drool. I was getting ready to send them The Vampire’s Gallery squealing like a girl, when I noticed the second thing it says on their submission guideline page is they’re closed for submissions.
That’s a pretty nifty too. Apparently my writing is in excellent condition, just need to make it more lean now.
Glad it’s helpful. A little editing tip that really works for me: try switching the format of what you read. I read on my Kindle, but if you don’t have an e-reader, you can have something printed from Lulu.com. I”ve done that. All said and it done it was around $10, and I had the thrill of holding my book in my hand!
Your blog is awesome and I miss crucial things when I don’t visit daily!
Also, the Writer’s Diet needs to be incorporated into Scrivener or MS Word… it’s totally cool! On my first sample everything was LEAN except verbs — I was verbing all over the place. On my second sample, verbs were under control, but my “it is that there” was going crazazy. Those were WIPs… if I get my nerve up I will test a published piece. Nah. Some things are better to not think about.
The snippets I’ve seen from you never feel cumbersome. They’re very vivid.
Verbs were a problem for me, and generally “it is that there” are still problems for rough drafts.