Don’t let version confusion destroy your writing process

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The most fundamental principle in writing is actually . . . version control? It’s an unwritten rule. Like changing your underwear every day. And if you violate it, you are a barbarian. This is the least sexy writing advice ever. But if you and your collaborators don’t share a common understanding of version control, you’re … Continued

The 5-step fast edit

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You have a piece to edit and limited time to work on it — and the piece is a mess. How can you fix it quickly? While every author has their own idiosyncrasies, some problems are common, easily fixed, and make a dramatic difference in readability. Here are the five quick steps to make writing … Continued

I can’t believe my publisher doesn’t . . .

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It doesn’t matter if you have a six-figure advance or only got $3,000. It doesn’t matter if you have a big-five publisher or a small indie press or a hybrid publisher. If you’re a first-time author, you’ll soon be whining, “I can’t believe my publisher doesn’t . . . “, followed by some task that … Continued

How to fix rambling, repetitive prose

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It’s an editor’s nightmare. The writer produces content . . . reams of it. There are many ideas, but lots of repetition. And there’s no logic connecting it all. How can you turn this rambling wreck into a usable nonfiction narrative? The key is recognize that the problem here is structural, not textual. Editing the … Continued

Ask Dr. Wobs: Advice to a first-time editor

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Here’s a query from a new-minted editor that gets right to the heart of what an editor must do: Dear Dr. Wobs: I want to be an editor when I get out of school, and right now I’m doing beta projects for free to get some practice. I was looking for advice on my first … Continued

Rutger Hauer is gone, like tears in rain

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The actor Rutger Hauer has died. He elevated his most iconic performance by saying less than was in the script. Towards the end of the science fiction epic Blade Runner, the two main characters confront one another. Rick Deckard, played by Harrison Ford, has been tracking down an escaped replicant — a genetically engineered artificial … Continued

A snapshot of my high-end writing and editing business

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I’m now a little over four years into my corporate life as a freelance writer and editor. I try to be as transparent as possible. In that vein, today I’ll share a little of how I make a living, what works for me, and why. The work: writing and editing pay the bills In four … Continued