By: Kristen Lamb
We can have the best story ideas in the world, but to be blunt? There’s a lot to be said for delivery. While these problems might seem picky, there are some fundamental errors that can weaken the writing. If our writing loses power, this can become distressing or distracting to readers.
Many readers (not being editors or professional writers) might not be able to articulate specifically why they lost interest in a story, but often the answer is simple. It can be an accumulation of the small things. The little foxes spoil the vine.
Most of us make one or more of these errors, especially when we’re new. Hey, that’s called “being NEW.” No one is born with the natural ability to write brilliant, perfect novels coded into their DNA. It takes time and practice, so give yourself permission to make mistakes…then learn, suck it up and back to work.
It writes the words or it gets the hose *pets fluffy white dog*
To maybe make you guys feel better, I’ve written well over a million words in blogs and articles alone. I’ve also written three books, two novels and scads of short stories. As much as I have written—and EDITED—even I have to seek outside editors to look for these issues.
We ALL make these oopses. But, hopefully, this blog will give you a nice little checklist so you can clean up your own work as much as possible before handing it to a pro.
Not only will cleaning up these oopses make the editing process faster—because your editor can actually get to the MEAT of your work instead of being distracted by small errors—but the bill should be smaller because your editor can work faster because there are fewer problems to correct. Also, if you’re sending sample pages to an agent and he/she sees too many of these newbie blunders?
Oh, and a biggie? In The Digital Age, sample pages are the most POWERFUL tool we have for making a sale. Our first five pages can be the most important in the entire book ;) .
Today I’m again donning my editor’s hat to give you a peek into what red flags editors, agents (and even readers) see in those first five pages.
Red Flag #1
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Read the full article HERE!
If you missed my writing & marketing tweets and retweets yesterday, here they are again:
- It's Only A First Draft http://ow.ly/vYpZv
- Do Big Publishers Make Sense Anymore? | Where Writers Win http://ow.ly/vYq1k
- Fiction University (The Other Side of the Story): Are Your Characters Too Stupid To Live? http://ow.ly/vYq3t
- Self-Publishing Secrets: 5 Free Amazon Services That Will Help You Sell More Books http://ow.ly/vYq5j
- Best Hashtags for Authors to Use - Yahoo Voices - voices.yahoo.com http://ow.ly/vYq7e
- Why You Want An Agent Who Reads | Carly Watters, Literary Agent http://ow.ly/vYqam
- 15 Ways To Improve KDP – Progress Report | David Gaughran http://ow.ly/vYqcb
- Bad Girls, Good Guys, and Two-Fisted Action: Violence and Gore -- Write Less or Write More? http://ow.ly/vYqeH
- Creating Characters Readers Care About http://ow.ly/vYqh8
- Is Your Story Worth Saving? http://ow.ly/vZbdd @Storyfix
- Seriously Write: The Relationship Between Character and Setting by Meg Moseley http://ow.ly/vZbBw
- Five Warning Signs Your Story Needs Revision | Kristen Lamb's Blog http://ow.ly/w0I95