One Piece at a Time

Books, like quilts, require assembling many pieces.

When I visited my in-laws before Christmas, I was amazed at the progress my mother-in-law had made on her latest quilt.

When I first saw the project in July, I feared it was more than she could handle. The intricate pattern called for hundreds, if not thousands, of tiny … Continue reading

Fixing ‘Wasy’ Wording

Challenge yourself to create more vivid writing.

I appreciate the advice from children’s writer Christian Harder Tangvald: “Circle every is and was on your manuscript; you don’t want writing that’s “isy” and “wasy.”

So I checked each use of was while I edited the 60,000-word YA novel. It started with 942. I cut that to 786.

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Catch and Replace

Don’t miss this tool for finding your mistakes.

Want to submit an error-free manuscript? Remember one keyboard shortcut.

Seriously. A few days ago, this simple command enabled me to catch multiple problems I’d missed in my first two editing passes through a book-length manuscript.

The novel told a great story. But the author struggled, as many … Continue reading