Reposted: Should You Edit As You Go?

Check out this great piece by K.M. Weiland, readers:

Should you edit as you go? This is a question just about every writer asks at one point or another. Part of the reason for the prevalence of the question is that the question is in fact complex and contextual. In short, the answer to “should you edit as you go?” isn’t always a simple yes or no.

Popular advice usually insists, “Never edit as you go.” Sometimes this is the most advantageous approach. Other times, however, refusing to edit as you go can lead to a hot mess of a first draft that lands somewhere between “this will take me the rest of my life to fix” and “this is unsalvageable.”

But if you choose the other fork in the road and do allow yourself to edit as you go, you may equally find yourself forever stuck in a morass of perfectionism, in which you never get to have the fun of actually writing and moving your story forward.

Personally, I do edit as I go. I’ve taken this approach on every novel I’ve ever written, and it has served me well. Not only does it lead to cleaner first drafts that require fewer edits at the end, it also helps me course-correct stories as quickly as possible. The alternative, often, would be to knowingly write a broken first draft. For some that might work; for me, it seems like pointless torture.

Read more….

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