Edit, Edit, Edit or Stop, Stop, Stop?

I’ve had a nagging feeling about one of my stories, something just wasn’t quite right.

We all know every story needs a beginning, middle and an end.

Well I’ve decided that the middle of my story should be at the end and the end should be in the middle. So I’ve spent the last few days jiggling things about and I’m really pleased with the results.

I’ve been given two pieces of advise recently about editing.

One I’ve read is by Esther Freud, Esther says, “Editing is everything. Cut until you can cut no more. What is left often springs into life.” The other is from a friend who’s advise is this, “Just stop editing! When you’re happy with what you’ve written don’t tinker about anymore or you’ll end up editing too much.”

I can see both points, but as I edit I do tend to keep Esther’s quote to mind, edit until you can cut no more.

Which side of the fence do you stand on? Or have you got a different editing pearl of wisdom? I’d love to hear it if you do. :-)

7 thoughts on “Edit, Edit, Edit or Stop, Stop, Stop?

  1. It’s a tricky one because I do think you can be in danger of losing any original creativity if you edit and tinker with a story too much! Just make it the best you can then send it on its way.

  2. I’m a terrible tinkerer and sometimes I lose a story just because I edit all the life out of it and every time I read through I can find something to change. I agree with Rosemary – make it the best you can then send it on its way x

  3. You can definitely do too much editing. I do it all the time. But it does need to be right, so the trick is in finding the balance. It still takes a fair bit of courage to finally accept that a story/novel is as good as you can possibly make it…and then send it off. Ex

    • I agree Rena you can definitely do too much. I usually open a new document each time I edit, it helps me to be more brutal knowing everything is still saved in a previous document! :-)

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