A couple of weeks ago I did a post on my writing process, which you can view here. On a skim through, both these posts might look like twins—fairly identical, but little differences. But if you look closely in to the different ‘ideas’ or writing and editing, you might notice that both of them are quite different from each other. So today I’m going to be talking about my editing process, or, to put it in simply, how I edit my books. Continue reading for some bonus editing tips and also, do what I say, not what I do.

GOALS

First things first, you need to set up your goals. The most basic and essential editing goals (in my opinion, you are free to agree or disagree) to make your book great are:

  1. Keeping the original draft intact
  2. A flawless draft, without errors
  3. Keeping the backbone intact

And just a little thing you want to keep in mind – do not what I do, but what I say. I completely went off track with the third goal, thanks to dad’s excitement, but hear me out. First of all, make sure you can still see the original draft through these new fancy words. I just think it’s important to let YOU shine through the books, and not YOU [EDITOR] show all the time. Second, you want to revise it so many times that no error is left. I personally (thanks to dad) did not realise how crucial this was until my third book. If you want people to take you seriously, make sure your book doesn’t have any errors in it. Lastly, keep the spine intact. No matter if you’re writing, re-writing, editing whatever, make sure the spine of the story stays the same – and by spine I mean the general idea. You cannot go rewriting a story from scratch – it will turn out a completely different novel, and you don’t want all you previous thinking to go to trash – yes, changes to the storyline can be made, but even those should be made with great care – I personally copy and paste the entire thing into another documents and make my changes there to compare the two side by side. So I definitely recommend doing that.

LOOPHOLE SELF SCAN

Because I’m all about plot twists, death, magic and mysteries, it is very essential for me to fix up and strengthen the plot before I get to the language. This usually includes quickly running through my book in as little sittings as possible and make sure the story flows out smoothly—make sure you’re not contradicting yourself or a previous idea anywhere, no loopholes, no leftover spaces (unless its clear that the gap is to be filled in a sequel) or just anything out of order. This is especially essential to fantasy and mystery writers in my opinion.

LOOPHOLE STRANGER SCAN

This is another essential. This basically mean approaching someone who you know has read a lot of books like yours, and ask him/her to read your book and go through it and give suggestions that are plot related. This is the easiest because the person who reads the book doesn’t have to be a pro English expert, as you’re only looking for improvements in the plot, but if you want corrections in spelling too, go ahead and go for it. Also, make sure you’re ready to accept criticism, and you’re not waiting for your own praise, but some genuine suggestions. For me, this is my mom most of the time.

LANGUAGE STRANGER SCAN

This will kind of sound repetitive, but again, go through your book and search and correct all grammar and spelling mistakes. For me, my mom corrects spellinges and is grammar (get it?) while she is doing a loophole scan. She will do this on a print copy, and then I’ll copy them onto my computer.

LANGUAGE SELF SCAN

Not necessary, but I do it nonetheless. This is the part where I kind of move from correcting to making it better. I swap out words for better ones, paragraphs for better paragraphs, and so on and so forth. I focus on the description, vocabulary, language, and everything like that. This also automatically rolls into a spelling/grammar check.

REWRITING?

A lot of people rewrite books, but I personally find that very de-motivating, and try to edit mostly, because it keep in line with goal #1 and that’s where I edit A LOT. So I personally don’t think it’s necessary to rewrite, but if you feel like it, do it.

PRO EDITORS?

I personally don’t feel like I’m in the need for a professional editor, even though it takes my mother a million years to edit one story, because she is busy, but I just feel more comfortable sitting down with her, correcting stuff myself, being able to give suggestions, and just discussing stuff openly the way I never would with someone else.

REVIEWING?

No, this is not about sending books to book bloggers/booktubers for review, but this is more of pre-publication suggestion kind of thing. I’d highly suggest sending a manuscript to some trustee people you can count on to give you genuine, valuable suggestions. This will usually be my friend, my mom, and a cousin.

So that is it for how I edit my books. I hope you got a ton of information out of this post and enjoyed reading as much as I did writing it. And that’s it! I’ll see you next time. Bye!

As I mentioned in my previous post, I mostly listen to music while writing to get me in the mood. And if I don’t have music, I find it hard to concentrate on writing. I may or may not have promised in that post that I will do this post, but whatever the case, here’s some music I listen to while writing. 

LORD OF THE RINGS MOVIES SOUNDTRACKS

Because most of my books are fantasy, these soundtracks work best for me. There are three helluva long movies that I can pick from, and it’s easy as that. I love all the soundtracks. The movies also provide a great variety of soundtracks from romance and action to mystery and sadness. So I definitely recommend googling some of them up and choosing from them. My favourite ones are Give up The Halfling, Theoden King, Farewell to Lorien, The Fighting Urk Hai, One Ring to Rule Them All, Home is Behind, and The Breaking of the Fellowship.

HARRY POTTER MOVIES SOUNDTRACKS

Again, a classic. I love a lot of Harry Potter soundtracks. They provide much more variety than the previously mentioned ones, because there’s eight movies packed with romance, mystery, death, magic, action, and all sorts of things that work in my stories as well. My favourite ones are The Courtyard Apocalypse, Harry’s Sacrifice and The Chess Game, but I also have others that I use.

SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN SOUNDTRACKS

I loved this movie. From the VFX and the graphics to of course – the music and the soundtracks. I literally have the most soundtracks from this movie, and it even beats the number of Harry Potter soundtracks I have. Even though this wasn’t as similar to my stories as the above, but the music fits my stories like a shoe. My all time favourites are Warriors on the Beach, White Horse and Escape from the Tower. Because my books always contain running, fighting and magic scenes, I listen to them more than half of the time I spend writing.

THE HUNGER GAMES MOVIES SOUNDTRACKS

I’ve been a massive MASSIVE fan of this series all my life. And even though my current writings are NOTHING like it, I listen to a lot of its soundtracks. They fit in beautifully. My favourites are mostly the ones with action, like, The Games Begin, The Fog, Monkey Muts, and Arena Crumbles.

OUTLANDER SOUNDTRACKS

Another classic. I started the tv show back in June of 2016, and then I read the first book, then watched the second season, and I fell in love the moment I clicked play on that pilot. The soundtracks are heavenly. Heavenly. They legit make my story. My favourites are Lawless, Castle Leoch, Fallen Through Time, Veil of Time, A Dance With Druids, and of course, The Skye Boat Song.

REIGN SONGS

When it comes to songs — not soundtracks, songs — I look to nowhere but Reign. Another one of my favourite tv shows, Reign has one of the best music ever. And though it’s not very popular, I love the tv show and the music itself. My favourites are Hills to Climb, Crystals, Journey, The Hunt, My Eyes, Scotland, Breathe, Kingdom Fall, Hello My Old Heart and my absolute favourite, Take Control.

SHADOWHUNTERS SONGS

Another one of the same category, Shadowhunters also has epic songs — not soundtracks — which are mostly by Ruelle, and I love them all. I listen to them mostly when I’m writing a sassy mysterious first scene. My favourites are Monsters, Live Like Legends, Storm, Invincible and War of Hearts.

THE 100 SONGS

When it comes to songs, again, The 100 rocks. It’s an amazing tv show that I love, and because of its depressing atmosphere, its music is incredibly emotional and is perfect for a sad scene. My faves are Empire of Our Own, Knocking on Heaven’s Door, The Other Side, and Thousand Eyes.

So that’s it for my list. I hope you got some ideas and some material to work on. That’s all for now. I’ll talk to you next time. Bye!

My writing process is not really a ‘process’ or ‘routine’, it is, now, thanks to two years of writing, now a general and involuntary flow of my brain into my computer and onto the page in the form of words. I feel like that was a school-ey robotic definition, but that’s what I’d call my writing process. The reason for that is simple: When I sit down with my computer an start typing, I kind of flow into an automatic mode where I just get lost. I don’t even know how I manage to write while being lost and nowhere, but I do and that’s why I call it an ‘involuntary’ flow of my brain into my computer. But without further ado, here’s how I write.

1. PLANNING

This is considering what I’m writing. If I’m starting a novel from scratch, I’ll obviously have an outline, (this post is about writing, not outlining) so I’ll go through it, seeing what I need to write, what events happen first and just little things. If I’m picking up writing, I’ll just start typing straight away, unless there’s a complex scene going on and I need to think very hard and straight about what I’m going to write. Otherwise, I just take the plunge.

2. MUSIC

I usually listen to music while I write. The music depends on what I’m feeling at the time and what I’m writing. I usually listen to movie soundtracks, so I don’t get carried away by lyrics. The movie soundtracks differ according to the scene. If I’m writing an action scene, I will listen to an action soundtrack from another movie. That’s how I usually do it. If I’m in the mood I’ll also just pop on some lyrical songs.

3. WRITING

Writing specifically is a very difficult thing for me to explain. It’s such an abstract process that I’m sure if I did tell you, it would make no sense. But I’ll give it a try. I just write. I don’t care about being perfect, spellings, grammar, anything else — I just write. And honestly I think that’s the best thing you can do as a writer because it keeps work going faster and also forces you to do more editing, which is essential. It also stops you from coming back and editing at the time, and that’s only going to slow you down, because when it comes to writing, the biggest obstacle you will ever face is your own inner editor.

4. TYPING

Now I don’t type like you normally should. Though I’m fast, I type in my own way. I guess when I was small I didn’t know the real way to type and just did it however I wanted, and with practice I’ve come to do the same way. And now it just urks me. I want to shift to the actual typing way, but I can’t. It’s too late. What I hate Most about my typing way, is I always press Caps Lock instead of shift, even for writing only one capital character. I’ve honestly grown tired of it.

So that’s it for this post. Hope you enjoyed reading how I write my stories. I’d love to hear your thoughts and stories down below in the comments. And that’s it. Thanks for reading. Bye!