Friday, July 13, 2012

Now I Get It.

On the recommendation of a friend, I read Stephen King's On Writing several months ago. I mean, what better source to learn how to be a successful author, right? There were a few nuggets of wisdom I put into immediate practice, and several that I thought, "Well that's just plain weird." One of these oddities was Mr. King's suggestion that, after a manuscript was written, the author should put it out of sight for a while to let it "incubate" before revising it. Incubate? I thought. Am I trying to write or hatch an egg here? And so I filed it away and ignored it.

You may have caught my post earlier this week about having some short stories accepted in an anthology. Even though the deadline for submission was in June, I knew I would be working on a different project, so I wrote, re-wrote, sought advice on, polished, and sent off my submissions back in Mach. When I received my acceptance email, I went back to re-read my first story, and to my horror, I instantly spotted three grammatical errors on the first page. And yes, I *do* claim to be a professional editor. Then it got worse. There were phrases, whole sentences even, that made me go "huh"? I have no idea what they meant, and I wrote them.

And now I get it, Mr. King. Time is the best, perhaps only way, to make sure you are looking with fresh eyes on your work, not simply seeing what is supposed to be there. Since I will be spending the rest of my free time in an editing cave this weekend, I hope you all have a lovely one.  :P

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