Lean and Mean: Extreme Line Editing!

An interesting discussion (we think) for today: Tumblr user “madlori” has some line editing advice you might not like. Firstly, before we dive into that, it’s important we clarify the difference between line editing and any other form of manuscript editing... Line editing comes near the end of the writing process, before the copy editor [...]

By | September 6th, 2017|Editing|0 Comments

Readability Scales: Do They Matter and Which Do You Trust?

Flesch-Kincaid, Gunning Fog, reading ease, grade level... if all this sounds like gibberish to you, you’re not alone. Some, however, you’ll probably recognise as terms which describe the level of your writing’s readability. The question is: How important is it to understand your readability score, and what does it mean for your story? Before we [...]

By | July 17th, 2017|Editing, The Craft of Writing|8 Comments

TMI? 5 Ways to Fix Excessive Description

Previously, we talked about how descriptive writing is a crucial aspect of creating a book that absorbs, enthrals and entertains your reader... But what happens when descriptive writing goes too far? You know what it’s like – how often have you read a book by a novice that contains seemingly endless run-on sentences so packed [...]

By | June 21st, 2017|Editing, The Craft of Writing|2 Comments

The Easy Way to Kill Passive Voice in Your Writing

Ah... passive voice. Just hearing that term conjures images of ninth-grade English class with all its confusing grammar rules! Passive voice is something that’s often talked about with disdain by editors and writing coaches – but many writers find it hard to recognise when they’re using it. That muscle can be a difficult one to [...]

By | June 14th, 2017|Editing|0 Comments

Is Adverb Overload Dragging Your Manuscript Down?

If there’s one telltale sign of an amateur writer, it’s a manuscript crammed with adverbs. Adverbs are those –ly words, like quickly or angrily, that we tend to rely on in early drafts. But now you’re in the editing process, most of them need to go. Why? In simple terms, adverbs rely on weak verbs [...]

By | May 22nd, 2017|Editing, The Craft of Writing|4 Comments

The List of Clichés You Should Strike Down in Editing

Strong writing is crisp and distinct. Clichés are cheesy and amateurish. And you’re better than that. There are thousands of clichés out there, so it’s no wonder they sometimes creep into our writing during the drafting stage. But they can make your prose feel boring, unimaginative -- or worse, amateurish. Now that you’re editing, it’s [...]

By | May 10th, 2017|Editing, The Craft of Writing|15 Comments