Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Thought it was about time I popped up and made an appearance before people started wondering if I'd dropped off the planet.

As usual, life has been crazy with kids and work and unfortunately writing is reserved for the tiny, late hours of the night where my brain has already headed to bed. In this time, I've been working on my FIRST EVER edits.

I suppose I was lucky in that I did a quite major rewrite before subbing the full again to my editor, so the changes are reasonably minor.

Carina has a fabulous system of using Track Changes, which I already use with my CPs, so at least I didn't have to get used to that.

One thing I thought I'd done bad hadn't was change all my spelling to American but unfortunately I missed a zillion of these so they were the first things to go. This was relatively easy, as was changing an number of Aussie-isms - terms/phrases that are very Australian and therefore may cause the overseas reader to stumble. The amount of these astounded me - I really didn't think I had that much of an Aussie vocabulary but its amazing how many words I used without thinking.

As these are my first edits, I'm making up the process as I go along. My process thus far is to start with the really, really easy changes - accept them, then go onto the easy changes- do them, and leave the actual rewrites and adding significant chunks until the end.

I have a kid-free day today and that is what I'm planning to do... start stage three of edits. Wish me luck!

Would love to hear how other people tackle edits?


Coleen Kwan said...

My first edits came back a bloodbath of red ink! To be honest, I agreed with most of my editor's notes. She's improved my writing so much.

I didn't Americanize my spelling, and it's a bit hard to do that once track changes is turned on, so it'll have to wait to later.

I wasn't born in Australia, but I seem to have picked up a lot of colloquilisms which I've had to change, like ute, dobber.

Mel Teshco said...

Hi Rach!

Congrats on those first edits! =)

I'm more much more linear (just like my writing) and have to perfect each edit as I go, and just work through them until all are done.

Leah said...

My edits were more dotpoints in a separate word document, rather than line by line edits, so I just worked my way through - knocking off the easiest edits first (changing a line of dialogue here and there) and then tackling the bigs ones (write a whole new chapter!). So I think my process is just like yours - start small and work my way towards the scary ones.

Rachael Johns said...

Coleen - I guess different editors do different things. My editor picked up all the US spellings straight away. Ooh am intrigued to how you used 'dobber', which is such a fab word.

Rachael Johns said...

Mel - I admire your discipline but i don't think I could work like that :)

Rachael Johns said...

Leah - I was lucky in that my edits were very specific, different to the revs I'd received when working with M&B. Love our process!

Lacey Devlin said...

Aw why don't they like our Aussie-isms? How are we ever going to get the rest of the world to speak like us if we don't let the readers stumble? =P

Happy editing, Rach!

joanne pibworth said...

I'd have quite like to have read it with the Aussie-isms. :o)
Congrats on your first edits, lots of luck. xx

scarlet wilson said...

Have fun with the edits Rach, think how lovely, shiny and perfect your christmas fairy book will be!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your first edits!!

Like Joanne, I love reading Australian/British/whatever-isms cuz they're so much fun. Most of the time you can figure them out. But I suppose if there were TOO many it might slow the non-Aussie readers among us down. (For a long time my kids loved to use the word crikey - in honor of Steve Irwin, may he rest in peace)

Good luck, Rach!

Annie said...

Hi Rach
I have recently completed Angela James (Carina Press)editing course on line. It has made such a different to my editing, now structured and streamlined. Angela is running the course (Before you Hit Send) again in July. I would recommend it for both beginners and published authors. She is also currently putting it into a book.

Jackie Ashenden said...

Interesting, Rach! I'd love to tell you how I do mine but I don't have any. day. :-)

Rachael Johns said...

Lacey - totally agree with you. Just how are we supposed conquer the world if they won't budge a little?

Joanne - I'll have to give you the uncensored version, although I'm not sure I'm actually allowed?

Scarlet - I hope you're right about the perfection :)

Rachael Johns said...

Thanks Aimee!!! I hear ya on Steve Irwin - I have a six year old obsessed with his daughter's series of Jungle books :)

Hi Annie - I did Angela's course too, although I lurked. Tsk tsk! Great stuff though!

Jackie - I didn't mean just published edits. You do EDITS :)