Book Review: Self-editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and Dave King

Self editing for fiction writers

I read quite a few writing and editing books, and some are better than others. This book was really useful. I am a big believer in helping yourself as much as you can, while you seek help from those that know better too. Be active.

The topics covered included showing and telling, characterisation and exposition, point of view, proportion, dialogue, interior monologue, repetition and voice. I think it’s important as a writer to get that balance, between free creative just-getting-it-down-on-the-page type thinking, and being more rational and ruthless about whether the words actually make the story and characters come across in the way you intended. It’s certainly made me look hard at each sentence/paragraph/chapter and think about what the text is actually doing.

What was great about this book was that everything was delivered in an easy to read way, full of examples and thorough explanations. The more you read about editing, the more it begins to sink into your way of thinking and the easier it gets to see how you can polish up your own manuscript.

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