Updated: May 9
Some of you might remember that last year, I did a 50 + 50 mass release event for privilege tiers. This year, I will be doing something similar but not for privilege. It's to entice my readers to spend more on Ball of Nothing and bring me up the ranks.
Just some short self-promotion for the event, basically there are 2 ways to get me to do a mass release.
This is a message I posted on my Discord Server and some people wonder how I get through so many chapters. Writing is only half the journey, the other half is editing.
Ever since my proofreader Ashmrth left due to irl commitments, I've been managing this on my own. How do I do it?
In this blog, I will break down the stages of editing that I do without a proofreader. If I can do it, so can you. Let's get started!
Step 1: Download Grammarly
Grammarly is free to use. All you need to do is sign up and instal it to your Word extensions or to Google Chrome browser.
I have not bought the premium version of it so I cannot tell you if the investment would be worth it but I can vouch for the free version. As a certified typoist, I don't get too many grammatical suggestions or corrections from it but it does help me look out for stupid typos such as "investmnt" instead of "investment".
This is an on-the-go checker that's going to save you a lot of time when you do your edits at a later stage after you finish writing a chapter.
Step 2: Pause Between Paragraphs
Some writers enjoy doing writing sprints with me. I do it on discord with a bunch of other writers and on live streams. This gets me motivated to clock in a word count and see actual progress without getting too distracted.
Join me on my live writing streams and subscribe to my Youtube!
Each sprint lasts for about 15-20 minutes and there would be an interval for breaks while other writers submit their word count before the next sprint starts. I like to take this time to scroll up after I submitted my word count to read through what I've written during the sprint while I hydrate. You will be able to catch yourself for glaring mistakes or typo errors that Grammarly failed to pick up. I like to catch myself for using the perfect tense inappropriately when really, I should be using the past tense.
In this stage, no major edits are made but if you feel like you want to fix the plot, it is a good time to figure about how much you're going to rewrite. This checkpoint edit will save you time in both cases and I highly recommend new writers to cultivate this editing and timing habit from early on. The most important thing that any writer should learn when they embark on this arduous journey is self-discipline.
Step 3: The Word Checker
Once you completed writing a chapter, the urge to hit the publish button can sometimes be very strong. Instead of doing that, walk away. Take a break, distract yourself and let the chapter sit in the drafts. There is still a lot of work to be done before it is actually ready.
Why do I suggest breaking this hard-earned concentration? Simple. When we focus too much on one subject, the tunnel vision syndrome starts to settle in and we become blind to many things that would normally be obvious to us when we're not in that tunnel-vision state. A reset of perspective to take a neutral stance is required for heavy-lifting edit work.
Once you're back to a normal frame of mind, copy out that file to a word document if you're not already writing on one and run it through their spellcheck. Grammarly doesn't pick everything out and Word helps to catch those even if it doesn't catch everything. It's the second automated safety net that would save you more time in the editing process.
This blog post is generously sponsored by the following Patreons: *This could be your name*.
Now that you're done, you should read through your chapter from start to end. Some people prefer to play it aloud using the text-to-speech function. It helps us to listen to what our eyes normally miss that is glanced over by the checkers.
At this stage, you should be looking at the flow of your story more than how you tell it. The writing is over, now it is time to read and enjoy your masterpiece as your chapter's very first reader.
Some questions to ask yourself at this stage of editing is if you actually like how your story is flowing or progressing. Does a sentence hit you in the feels? Or do they lack certain impact? Is listening to your own chapter making you feel sleepy? Do you just want to roll your eyes and move to something more interesting?
Your answer to these questions will let you know how polished your chapter is and if it is ready for publishing. Rework on this as many times as you need and don't forget to be patient with yourself. Not everybody can write 10,000 words a day and make them sound so seamless. It took these writers years of practice and hundreds of hours to get to that level.
Destiny's Advice: You need to be your story's first fan before other readers can become fans of it.
Step 4: Formatting
Once you're satisfied with the content of your chapter, it is finally time to add the garnish to your newest dish before you serve it to your hungry readers.
Not everyone has things to do at this stage. Normally, I would include the author's note, format the line breaks and bold or italic some parts but that's really it. There isn't a lot to do in this editing stage and you shouldn't take more than 5 minutes to complete it.
With that, you've successfully completed the editing process and can now publish your polished chapter or schedule them into the beautiful stockpile for a mass release. I hope this blog answered some of your questions about what I do off-screen when I end my writing streams. It's normally the editing. The edits you see on stream are usually the first few stages but for heavier works, this is the full process.
I know every writer has a different style of working and everyone's editing process is different but for me, this is what works best. There is no time limit for editing so don't rush it. You want to be as thorough as you can so that you provide the best quality you know you are capable of.
I hope this has been helpful. If you have any questions, feel free to let me know. I try to answer all writing-related questions on my Youtube live streams because I don't believe any author starting out should struggle through the writing world the way I did.
This is Destiny Aitsuji, signing off!