Wednesday, January 21, 2009

First Things

How you edit the first chapter of your novel is key. If you began the writing process by crafting a plot treatment, character sketches and a chapter outline, you're ahead of the game. This approach helps you determine what should appear in chapter one, and what should wait until later. Once you've done the due diligence, you're ready to edit. As you approach the process, ask yourself: "Do I open with some part of the story engine running? Or am I spending too much time warming up?" from James Scott Bell, Revision and Self-Editing. Begin by correcting typos, confirming facts, rewriting unclear speech and eliminating any throat-clearing. Excise back story, but set it aside to make sure you address any essential aspects later.

To flex your editing muscles and polish that all-important first chapter, check out today's tip. As always, let us know how it goes.

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