It's that time of year: NaNo novel editing time. This can be a dreaded time of year because it's when you're finally looking at how messy that novel came out. XD Maybe this post is a little late, but I'm going to share with you one of my editing tricks that makes sorting out that messy first draft a little easier.
1.) Take Notes as You Go - When I'm writing my first drafts, I'm always taking notes as I go. Notes can be taken in the notes section on Scrivener, comments on Microsoft word, or a good old-fashioned notebook. Things I make sure to write down are:
- Backstory that I figured out later in the draft
- Stuff that needs to be foreshadowed that I didn't know about till later
- Characters that need names
- Worldbuilding that needs to be developed
Out of these research is the biggest one because I research a little before writing but most of my research happens before the second draft because often I don't know all of the research I need until then. Having these notes already saves a lot of time when I'm editing. It may slow you down a bit in writing to take down these notes, but it's best to write them down now because you may forget them when you're going through the first round of edits.
|Take notes as epically as Light Yagami|
3.) Label Points of Views - Sometimes you may need to see how evenly dispersed the POVs are, delete a POV, or change a POV for a chapter. This saves you so much time when you're going through the chapters trying to find which chapter has whose POV. In Scrivener, you can do this by going to labels then edit then create a new label. I like to color code my labels so when I'm looking at the note cards I see which chapter has whose POV at a glance. Again using Microsoft comments and a notebook are a good substitute. Writing the POVs in different colored ink can be a good idea too!
Conclusion - These are little things and may add a few more minutes to your writing time, but they can make your editing life much easier. Just don't take notes in a Death Note. Don't want a character massacre. ;)
Do you take any of these notes while writing your first drafts? Do you have any to add? Have you watched Death Note?
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