When writers edit – why we keep missing errors

I was pretty harsh on hindsight about 9 months ago in one of my posts. I might have mentioned the word hindsight alongside words like acid, fire and brimstone. I may have also likened it to a pointy-edged object. But I’ve grown lately, and I’ve come to understand that there are reasons I miss editing errors the 1st, 10th and even 40th time around.

I think it has something to do with my capacity to hold new information. Now writing veterans don’t have the same learning curve as I, but there are probably still moments where they fly over an error because they can write without having to be so conscious of mistakes. It’s the nervous performer who often succeeds.

But in my case, when my information funnel is full, I can only fit more in when the contents start filtering through the bottom. And the bottom of my funnel is pin sized and the information is like mud….

So I’m going to take it easy on myself this time around. I wanted to berate myself for sending off queries too early. But I had done my research, am continuing to research and am learning from research. So each round, I’m going to tweak – change the first paragraph of my MS, change my query blurb, take out unneccesary words and scrutinise further.

Why didn’t I do this first time? Well, I did – as far as I could tell. But with queries looming over my head and time dragging on from my final draft ( I needed that belly laugh) I had to send those queries out.

Have you even felt that?

And now that they are out, I feel like the bottom of my funnel is now marble sized, and with that extra room, I can see things I couldn’t before.

Surely, I’m not the only one…

 

 

 

My New Years Revelation: I’m all or nothing, and I’m okay with that.

I hope you had a wonderful break 🙂 There will be those of you that let all your hairs hang out, responding with, ‘What book?’ when asked what there is to cook, and there will be those scoffing at my first sentence saying, ‘Pfft. What break?’ Either way, we are who we are, and if we aren’t happy with the decisions that we make, then self-punishment will manifest in an excruciatingly painful way. Bless it 🙂 There is no escape. You know it; I know it.

Even if I do relax, my break is never lacking in the stress department. In that little shop of horrors, I’m buying up tension like it will cure other drivers of the disorder that causes them to lose sight of their indicator. You can stress and relax? Yes, it’s a gift.

But this was not, for a change, book related. For the past three weeks, I have only spent time with my family or invested time in ridding the world of demons. Hey, I did say that I was pretty stressed; that’s a pretty important job.

Other than playing Diablo 3, which can loosely be considered inspiration for my series,  available hours have been spent reconnecting with my daughter and disconnecting with my son. Don’t judge me just yet; he is also ridding the world of.. something. Creativity maybe?

But my son and I do have a special connection, and it takes few words to cement our relationship. Five in fact: What level is your hunter?

My daughter, in comparison, requires validation of a very particular, specific nature. Very particular. Very specific. Detailed even… So, we talk about monster high dolls and ever after high dolls, and then I turn to my daughter and ask her what she wants to talk about. 😛 Disclaimer: I have nothing against boys playing with dolls, I just couldn’t help myself. 

So, instead of spreading myself over the course of the day, getting little bits of everything done and grumbling in the process, I’ve been ridding the world of demons while simultaneously wooing my own little devil. I’m a confused, multitasker with split loyalties. 🙂

But if that means I get nothing done writing wise,  at least I’m ‘all’ to them.

And I’m okay with that.

 

 

How do you cope when your routine is interrupted?

It’s the end of school holidays, and I’ve managed to get very little done in terms of writing-career progression or children-fun time progression. It would make complete sense to work towards accomplishing small goals in each area: an hour in the morning for work then an hour to the kids, a morning for work, an afternoon for the kids. It seems so simple!

We’ve all heard of the buddy system, but have you heard of the bud-i system?

When you go to a theme park and you want to go on a roller coaster, you grab your buddy, you egg each other on, and you keep an eye on each other so that you won’t get lost. When you get off, you’ve had your ups and downs, but you feel like you’ve done something. Gotten somewhere. This is what writing is like for me when I’m following my routine.

But with the bud-i system, my routine has been interrupted. It’s very much like going on those nauseating tea cup rides. I would come on with you, but I just ate a hot dog, but I like to keep my lunch down, but I  find it really rude placing my butt in crockery that a giant might have to drink out of one day.

Whatever the reason, with the bud-i system, you feel you are going nowhere, stuck on loop, feeling sick when it seems it will never end.

I have to work, but I have to spend time with the kids.

I have to spend time with the kids, but I have to work.

I have to work, but I feel guilty about not spending time with the kids.

So what do I do? I get stuck on loop and get neither done. And at the end of the day, I’m unfulfilled and nowhere closer to my goals, feeling sick about it and cranky. Which starts another loop led by But’s friend, Because.

I’m cranky and depressed because I didn’t write.

I didn’t write because I was cranky and depressed.

When the kids go back to school, I have to be wary of a new bud-i loop that’s been getting a little too cosy with my consciousness. That’s another thing, when I’m worrying about all the things not getting done, without getting them done, I have too much time to think.

I have to write today, but I have to get those agent queries started.

I have to get those queries done, but I have research to do.

I have research to do, but I have to write today.

They are all excuses; they are all crutches.

I wrote a post a few months back talking about how if I was going to take time off writing, I was going to make the most of that time. And that’s what I should have done.

Maybe I need a buddy to drag me back to the roller coaster.

https://lorellepage.wordpress.com/2014/07/13/commiting-to-non-writing-time/

How do you cope when your routine is interrupted? Hopefully, better than me 🙂