Monday, September 7, 2009
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Sunday, March 8, 2009
When you work on the Internet as a content writer doubling as a fiction editor,one necessarily feeds off the other. For example, the content writer side of what I do demands that I find ways to say things in smaller spaces and that helps me to look for ways to edit books down at the same time.
The reason the two disciplines work well together is simple. Both seo content writing and fiction editing arrive at the same point from different ends. All content writing jobs require that you 'edit' your thoughts before you write them and the editing work requires that you polish the words after they've been put down on the page.
Friday, February 20, 2009
Although you'd never know it by some of the excesses in print, in almost all forms of good writing less is more. That goes for both fiction editors, content writers and almost anyone else who uses the written word.
A Matter Of Focus
For the content writer, it's a matter of focus. You need to find new ways of saying things with as few words as possible. For the fiction editor,it's generally an exercise in sharpening the tools that you know you already use.
Either way you approach the Less Is More rule, it's always a good idea to make sure that you revisit the skills that you've developed often, regardless of whether you see yourself as a content writer or fiction editor. Keep the thinking sharp and the writing or editing will follow.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Over the years that I've been a fiction editor, I've noticed several mistakes that keep happening with authors who are starting out in their careers. The first is the use of the 'ly' modifier. More often than not, the 'ly' modifier is nothing more than lazy writing, a quick way of writing something that requires little effort. Consider this example.
"Johnny was seriously mad."
The modifier 'seriously' tells the reader about Johnny's emotional state, but it's always much better to show that same reader what mad looks like.
So, the sentence is vastly improved with a rewrite that goes like,
"Johnny's fists were curled at his sides."
The exact wording is up to the writer, but any good fiction editor will pick up on the difference.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
I was just working on a novel for a writer down in Texas and I noticed something that happens a lot in books that bears mentioning. Often writers will 'tell' the reader what the character is feeling rather than 'showing' them.
In other words, it's much better to write, "Johnny threw a dish across the room." Writing "Johnny was mad" is accurate enough, but it doesn’t supply any kind of mental image.