So, I had a few moments over the last week when I wanted to work on the novel. I really did. It’s just that I’ve got as much work to do at 10pm as I had at 7am, and the baby is finally asleep, and I dunno… that draft is looking pretty brutal right now. I don’t want to use my brain energies. Thought typings. Logic writing. Words. Whatever.
Weeeeell, I found an editing task that would improve my writing without using any brain power whatsoever. I didn’t even find it using brainpower. I found it using my friend Googles. I found this: WEBSITE OF THINGS explaining that, in most instances, I can cut certain words from my writing without losing anything.
And I also found this: OTHER WEBSITE OF THINGS FOR NEXT TIME which tells me other stuff I can fix by simply Ctrl-F’ing for certain words.
I removed about four hundred instances of the the word just. Apparently I just over-use the absolute crap out of that word. I also removed a few hundred reallys, because do I really need that many reallys? Really? Very also got the chop. That is next on the hit-list, because that’s just ridiculous: 1346 THATS!? I’m going to get it down to 500, at the absolute most. So often the sentence could get along with simply removing the that, and other times a quick re-structuring is all that’s required. It’s as simple as that… I mean: It’s simple.
So, please let me know: what are some HURR DURR I FORGOT TO BRAIN things that you do when you want to work on your book without… you know, working on your book?
Would love to know, because I think I’m going to be needing a lot of these over the next few months…
I don’t know if this qualifies as not using your brain, since you have to use your ears, but I used a program called Natural Reader (which has a free version and a paid version) and copied and pasted one chapter at a time for my last book. It was UNBELIEVABLE
(sorry, somehow hit a button that posted my comment without finishing it) how many mistakes I caught using that program! Yes, the voice is a little robotic, but that’s actually a good thing because mistakes and redundancies are caught more easily with the robotic voices.
I’ll probably be investing in the paid version so I can get through the sloppy mess that is going to be my draft for Book 3 after I’m done with NaNoWriMo.
That’s a really good idea actually. I find that if I read my book myself then I stop too often, I can never just allow it to flow (and so I don’t know if the flow is good or not…). Will add it to the list! (which reminds me, I was going to make a list of useful writing links at some point).
I recently got a new program for writing my book besides Pages, and I have to copy and paste every single chapter of the book into the new program. Then I have to edit the text size, and all these other boring things that I could have less patience to do.
But I went and did it anyways.
Only to find the “Paste and Retain Style” button after almost 48 hours of doing nothing but fixing and editing.
Nooooooo! Oh that would have hurt… I hope you at least got some good time in just contemplating your book while you were doing all that. Or at least had some very tasty beverages in the process.
I did. I had a bunch of crazy-tasting fizzy water…maybe THAT’S why those two chapters are so weird…
Btw – I wanted to go see your writing blog again, but couldn’t find the link… once again, I’m lost on the internet like a noob. What’s the link?
Writing blog? Alright. (It’s in a bit of a WIP stage again because my art style’s changing again. Ignore the URL: I can’t seem to change it without deleting the blog.)
Oh, I’m a huge abuser of “just” and “that!” It’s just that, y’know … 😧
When I’m feeling deprived in the brain cell department, I sometimes just delete all adverbs, all thoughts outside of dialogue and all dialogue tags that aren’t “said.” Then I read over when feeling perkier and find I rarely need to replace any of those things.
It leaves my writing on the stark and emotionless side, but that’s something I already know I’ll have to work on later. In general though, I feel that less is more.
Oh yeah, I probably could go through and delete a lot of thoughts outside of dialogue… and probably a lot of dialogue for that matter. I’ll have to be a bit careful not to cull too much, especially if it’s a reaction scene following a big fight or epic events. I love reading first person, and one of my favourite parts in other people’s books is the soliloquy/inner monologue stuff. If it’s a character I like, then I want to hear what they’re thinking.
Thanks! And yes, less is more, for sure. And that’s just that, Really. 😉