One of my jobs is to critique manuscripts. I find many new authors have excellent ideas, but may not have completely fleshed them out before they come across my computer screen. As a new author myself, I looked around the internet to see what processes other authors use to get their ideas from rough draft to submission ready.
The best tool I’ve discovered, which I have made my own, is from New York Times best selling author, Mary Burton. She uses a six draft technique that really works. The thing about writing that stumps most writers, and let’s face it, floods the market with unpolished self-published books, is the editing process. After a while, you begin to hate your own book because you’ve read it so many times it’s not even funny. But this is what separates a writer from an author. Toiling over your story to polish it into a shining work of art takes an immense amount of time, labor, and a critical eye. Most newbie authors I know fail to follow through in this area, whether it be their first novel or a self-pubbed short story requiring more edits.
I highly recommend heading over to Ms. Burton’s site and copying her 6 step process for your future edits. Below is a youtube video from that link worth a look. If it helps, please let Ms. Burton know. I think all of us, no matter how successful, like to know that what we are doing as a writer is touching the lives of others. Otherwise, why would any of us commit to the incredible amount of work it takes to write? Because I don’t know about you, but it sure isn’t for the fame or fortune…at least not yet! 🙂