Saturday, 7 December 2013


I have been asked to present a short course on fiction editing at next year’s Swanwick Summer School. It should be an interesting course to deliver.

Writing a first draft takes only one third of my story development time. One third goes on research and another third is expended on the editing process. In times past I tried to do as much editing as possible on my computer screen but I soon learned that a print-out was essential. It was the very fact of seeing the text in a different format that made the errors stand out. But my printer ink cartridges are expensive and I couldn’t easily carry around with me a wad of five hundred A4 pages. That was when I started uploading my manuscript onto to have a single paperback copy printed. The formatting is easily done and the cost is very reasonable.

I now use this technique constantly. The errors stand out on the printed pages and I can easily carry the paperback copy around with me. I can edit anywhere at any convenient time without carrying a laptop and without worrying about battery power.

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