And yet another edit! When will I ever learn? As a teacher, I always encouraging my students to edit again and “kick it up a notch” using more interesting words in their papers. “Don’t start your sentences with those boring “T” words like There are and The and Then and That! Leave out useless words like Almost, Actually, Look, Often, and Seems!” I tell them again and again to make each word audition.
This week I was schooled! I learned that it is easier to teach than to do, It seems my writing suffers from the same lack of excitement that I often find in my students’ papers..
Playing around with some Online Editing Apps has opened my eyes to my own issues. I am frugal, so I am only using the free version, but even the free version gives me plenty to work on! Several online editing App adds on Google claim to improve your writing. Hemingway App was interesting, but didn’t quite attack my personal writing issues. It suggested using simpler words- and I don’t always want to write simply. I think it would be great for many lawyers or MG writers though!
Next I tried an app which just pointed out common mistakes. Using Prowriting Aid humbled me! I take small sections at a time, so I am not overwhelmed, and I don’t change everything it points out. Even so, I have been “kicking it up” a lot! I feel sorry for my beta readers who are slugging their way though my manuscript- pre-Prowriting Aid. Yesterday I removed 60 instances of the word “actually” and I don’t know how many “would’s” and “look’s” and “seems.”
I will demonstrate with one short paragraph- Some problems have already been resolved in yesterday’s edits.
His grip tightened, and my wrists burned under p his gloved hands. I kicked his shins, but the large thick black books absorbed any impact my tennis shoes inflicted. Fear almost paralyzed me, but I forced my eyes up–up from big black belt and breastplate, up to the shoulder pads and voice box, and up to ominous face mask on the monster of my childhood nightmares.