One last edit… (and #BlackFriday sale)

… is what I said to myself, before I hand it over at the end of January.

Well, actually, my plan was to retype the whole darn novel, and it started pretty well.

If you’re new to this blog, you may not be aware of my rather unique editing style of retyping. I discovered a few years ago that it really helps to smooth out any kinks in the narrative that occurred when I was doing all the other edits. I love seeing the brand new document filling up again, the early word counts where just getting to 5000 was a huge celebration.

This time, I even rewrote the opening line, which is something I never do – that’s usually the fixed point in time I can always rely on. So there I was, typing away, when suddenly one of the scenes felt too soon. So I moved a section from a bit later on into its spot, and continued. But then, something else didn’t make sense, so that moved as well.

Now, I’ve moved almost all of the first eleven chapters around. I’ve never been completely happy with these opening chapters, so I’m really hoping I’ve solved the hiccups. At least I know that from Chapter 12 onwards, everything is in the right place… even if I haven’t used the right words!

Writers: what’s your quirkiest editing method?

Readers: have you ever struggled to get into a book because of the opening chapters, but then loved it? 




My lovely publishers, Vine Leaves Press, are having a huge sale on selected titles over this Black Friday weekend. From Friday 24th to Monday 27th November, you’ll be able to pick up some of the best-selling Vine Leaves books for just $0.99AUD (roughly 60 British pennies!)

All you need to do is go to, follow the link, and use the coupon code vlpcyber when you get to the checkout.

And yes, You. I. Us. is included in the sale, so if you’ve read it and loved it, please share this info so your friends can read it too 🙂

What could be simpler?

21 thoughts on “One last edit… (and #BlackFriday sale)

  1. As a reader, I stop reading if the first chapter or two doesn’t draw me in. As a writer, I am well aware of that so I always try to make the starts of my stories/the first chapters the best I can. 🙂


    1. I’m a stubborn reader, personally, I’ll fight to get past the opening chapters – but there are 2 or 3 books I’ve had to abandon. Because I know I’m unusual, I’m gonna keep re-writing this opening! You’re right, the openings have to be as awesome as you can make them!


  2. Hi Annalisa .. if you’re not satisfied we won’t be either … makes sense what you’re doing – good luck with writing up the rest … cheers Hilary


  3. Those early chapters are so important aren’t they? I have been known to move chapters around and it is amazing how it can change the whole flow of the story. Sounds like you are doing well with the editing, all the best with the rest.


  4. I’m in trouble if I start slashing right away (after already slashing and slashing). Hence, my lack of real novels. I appear to be a word serial killer. But for you – whatever works – roll with it. You produce a stellar product and I can’t wait to see this newest book. Good luck with Black Friday sales – fun for readers!


  5. When reading reviews of books, that’s often an opening statement folks make: “I had trouble following/getting through/(whatever issue) the first several chapters, but after that it really picked up,” or “later, I couldn’t put it down.” Generally I let the sentences spew out, but then randomly, other times, I can’t even move forward until I’ve constructed the perfect sentence with the exact, perfect words. I feel crazy while I’m doing it, too. But it’s a compulsion that must be fed. 🙂


    1. I’m now on my final edit before it goes to an editor, so when I hit parts that don’t make sense I HAVE to stop and perfect it – I’m at the stage where I can’t just move on anymore. You’re not crazy 🙂


  6. For me, “rearranging” a book is quite like taking a watch apart, then putting it back together. The biggest challenge I find is making the darned thing tick again. Congratulations on getting that story the way you want it.


    1. It’s like being a detective, rearranging all the information to make absolute sense! In the case of my first novella, Cat & The Dreamer, my alternate endings remained 😉


  7. I’ve rearranged books before. It’s fun stuff. =) My quirkiest editing habit? Probably the editing as I go. If my beginning isn’t solid, the muse stops in its tracks. Very annoying, but true. Good thing I work with an outline or I’d get completely stuck. =)


    1. I think you’re in good company, editing as you go – some of the most successful writers do that. I wish I could, so that when I typed ‘The End’ at the end, it really would be the end, not just the end until I start again tomorrow! 🙂


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