Article on Editing

Erin and I co-wrote an article over at Young Adult author Katie L. Carroll’s blog.

Team Editing

by Erin Callahan & Troy H. Gardner

Q. So you wrote a book, now what do you do with it?
A. Edit, edit, and then when you’re done, you edit it two more times.

Writing a book is only the first act of the long process of having an idea grow into a final novel. Once the manuscript has a beginning, middle, and end (hopefully), then it’s time to go back and revise.

With the split narration technique employed in the Mad Word series, our editing process starts when we combine all of the chapters into one file. At this point, either Erin or Troy has the file and works on it before passing it off to the other. We now use the Track Changes feature of Word, which allows you to track changes (well named, isn’t it?) in the document. This tool is invaluable when editing with a partner, as it allows you to quickly see what changes and comments your partner has added to the draft. It also reminds you which of those changes you made, which can occasionally get confusing. We also save each version of the manuscript with a new date. This makes it easy to tell which version is the most recent and preserves all the old versions, in case we decide to revert back to an earlier draft of a particular scene.

For the rest of the article, check out Katie’s blog.


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