9 Foolproof Steps of the Novel Editing Process 

If you’ve been working on your novel for some time and are ready to take the next step, you might be wondering how to get started as an editor in your field. Your best option is to contact an editor directly if possible, and ask them how they got started in the first and made their way up. 

But this method isn’t available to everyone, so here are some tips to help you get started on your own path toward becoming a successful novel editor. Read on to find out more about the novel editing process. 

  1. Choose your method

Read through your novel and make notes about what you would like to edit or change. Keep in mind that editing is a continual process, meaning you will have to read through the novel again and again before making any changes. 

Try not to make too many changes at once, but if you do, be sure to keep track of what you’ve changed so that if you want to make more edits later on, it’s easy for you. You can also take help from literary fiction editors to get your novel edited. Or you can just use their expertise to help you get started on editing. 

  1. Read through once without editing

After you have completed your book, it is recommended to read through your manuscript once without making any changes. This will help you see how long it is and how much work it will take. Check the spelling of all names, places, and words that are difficult to spell. 

You can outline these words or phrases and add comments on them if you are editing the writing work one education Microsoft Word or Google Docs. After you have proofread it completely, you can then come back and then start editing it as you want. 

  1. Take note of any issues as you read

Checking for spelling and grammar errors is the most common issue that needs to be addressed, so it’s usually the first thing you’ll want to do. Create a list of things that need to be fixed in order for the novel to work better- if there are many issues, you may have a long process ahead of you. 

You may also have to look at the typeface and font size. Sometimes a book has an awkward typeface or font size that makes it difficult to read. Since editing is all about reading, reading out loud will also help you figure out what words sound strange when spoken aloud. 

  1. Begin with the big-picture edits

Take your time to read the manuscript. The most important thing you can do is just read it. It’s easy to get caught up in the editing process and forget that the goal is to make the writing better. Reading it first will help you know what needs fixing or what might need fixing if something doesn’t seem quite right. 

  • Set goals for your edit and get answers to some questions like: 
  • What are your objectives? 
  • What do you want to achieve with this edit? 
  • Is there a specific part of the story that needs improvement? 

Once you have an idea of where your focus should be, then you’ll know which parts of the story require more attention. Maybe there are some areas of the novel that don’t need much work at all. 

  1. Fix any plot holes

It’s often necessary to edit novels for plot holes. If the story doesn’t make sense, it needs work. A good editor will bring out flaws and then help you correct them. These are some of the common questions an editor should be able to answer when they come across these problems: 

  1. What is your protagonist trying to achieve? 
  2. What are the obstacles that are preventing them from achieving their goal? 
  3. How do they overcome those obstacles in order to achieve their goal? 
  1. Address pacing issues

Pacing is an important factor in any novel. If the pace is too slow, readers will lose interest. If the pace is too fast, it will feel like nothing is happening, and the reader won’t be able to keep up. In order to avoid these issues, try following these tips: 

  1. Slow down at moments of tension or where you want the reader’s attention. 
  2. Give more detail when describing characters, scenes, and actions
  3. Add suspenseful details to increase the anticipation of upcoming events. 
  4. Add foreshadowing for upcoming events. 

These tips will allow you to take your writing at an appropriate pace that will not only be good for your readers but will also help you complete your book on a high note. 

  1. Work on character development

Working on character development is the most important part of editing a novel. There are some steps you can take to develop your character. For example, you should first start with their name and then move towards telling how old they are. 

Once you have made an impact with your story, it’s time you explain their appearance and what they look like, and where they were born. After this, you can include their family members and friends. 

  1. Don’t forget about setting

The setting is the time and place where the story takes place. It can be as simple as saying it takes place in that city, but this is not enough information for your reader. They will definitely need more details. The setting should provide clues about the culture, history, climate, and location of the story. 

It should also help develop characterization by showing how people interact with their environment and each other within it. 

  1. Editing is an ongoing process

No matter how much you try on the first editing attempt, there will always be some room for improvement in your manuscript. So, it’s best to keep your calm and do the editing in multiple alternate sittings. 

Editing is an ongoing process, and it’s important to remember that it doesn’t happen in one sitting. Professional editors recommend that writers should edit as they go along but also set aside time after finishing their draft and before moving on to the next phase, the publishing process. 

Here are some ways you can ensure that your novel editing process goes smoothly. For example, you can read through your manuscript with a highlighter in hand. It will ensure a perfect novel that will grab readers’ attention and will help you publish a bestseller. 

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