First off I need to clarify something that was brought to my attention with regards to my previous post One Chapter At A Time . You see, obvious when we work on a novel it’s done one chapter at a time, how else would we get through writing a novel. What I meant to say was that I’ve been doing a lot of cutting and pasting. I create a new file for each chapter and work through it that way. I feel that if I separate the chapters from the full manuscript I work quicker. I’m not looking at three hundred or so pages, I’m only working to edit ten. Like I said, it’s less daunting. So right now I have thirty one files in a folder on my computer, each chapter, edited and a novel that’s finally complete… I hope!
That said, when do you know when to stop editing. We all want the perfect, well punctuated, nice flowing story, but how do you know when you’ve edited the crap out it. When there’s nothing else you can do but turn over to a complete stranger to possibly tell you the things you’re missing. I’ve spent weeks, meticulously going through each word, correcting flow, killing some great scenes (that I’ve put aside in another folder to possibly use in another story). I’ve gone through punctuation, spelling errors, I know this story f by heart and not because I wrote it, but because I’ve gone over it so many times, I know what sentence is coming next. Talk about rereading something. I posted a link to an article on my Facebook page that got me thinking and found to be very helpful. I’m on step three by the way. We all want to produce the perfect piece of work, but you don’t want to over do it either.
Have you done all you can with your WIP? When did you know?