..if you’ve EVER committed one of these errors listed in this article, Ten Things That Make an Editor Stop Reading Your Manuscript.
I’ll be the first to admit, my hand is waving around in the air waiting to be called on. Oh please, me me me me!!
Seriously, though. In reading these tips, I couldn’t help but think to the first novel I ever wrote…and then the second…and then the third….and then the fourth…and then the one I’m actively working on right now.
The crimes that I am especially guilty of are #5 (Waiting for the Story to Start) and #8 (Characters Describing Themselves by Looking In The Mirror, or Other Awkward Self-Reference).
Really, I just removed a scene a few weeks ago in my WIP where my character was revealing details about herself via looking in the mirror. Granted, the original draft of this novel was written in 2005 — but still.
And for other older works of mine, “taking too long to start the story” is something that plagued me consistently throughout my earlier years. I do think, however, that this is a natural byproduct of starting a novel, writing to discover, and adding a high amount of unnecessary details simply to get an idea of what story you are telling. (Also probably a byproduct of completely winging it, not outlining, and just seeing what happens. All of which is my style of writing.)
The article is worth a gander, published or not, no matter the level of experience.
And as the author adds at the bottom, always be careful for TOO MANY ADVERBS!
(Just yesterday I found one sentence in my WIP that featured both nearly and barely in the same short sentence. Axe, axe, axe!)
Happy writing to you all!
[photo credit: www.betterwritinghabits.com]