I thought for a long time that I knew the difference between lose, loose, and loss. I said I could just tell the difference by thinking about it. No big problem there.
Guess what? I was wrong.
For some reason, I kept thinking that loose (as in, he loosened the ropes) was the same as lose (as in, I will not lose the game.) So I wrote a lot with that spelling in mind.
Now, I have to go back and fix them all. Worse, I have to think about it each time, just to make sure I am right, and I still sometimes get it wrong.
What does this mean? Always look up. The dictionary is your friend.
On another note, I finished my story for the writing contest! Well, almost. I inserted the paper edit into the computer, so I’m practically done. Yay! (Just a few more touch ups.)
how to edit
I once read something that basically said this is how you edit. You do step a, then step b, then step c, then step d, then step e. That is the most advisable way to edit. (I’d post it if I still had it.)
I thought that was a good idea and I would follow that. More or less did step A, which is where I read it through and changed all of the wrongness with characters. (I’m not the best about knowing how my characters behave at the beginning of the book.)
Then, I moved on and started to see about doing step b, except, whatever step b was I a) didn’t know fully how to know for certain I did it completely right and b) thought I already did it.
After that, I’ve come to the conclusion that everyone edits different. This was later proven when i heard that one author only edits her book once, because anything more than that would bore her.
I more or less then to agree.
That all being said, this is how I edit, which pretty much works for me. I’ve won some writing contests with this theory and so I’ve seen it work.
1) write the whole story (although I might go back and reread sections, editing them slightly then, I pretty much do no editing while writing. On a side note, it makes for a lot to clean up and with myself not liking editing, it isn’t the best way to do it, but I also learned never to not write the next section if I know how it goes.)
2) read it through once on the computer. This is to handle any gross mistakes and make it flow a little better. This is where, if I don’t understand what I wrote, I fix it up, because now I know for certain what I want to say.
3) Print out the whole thing (this can be huge) and do a paper edit. Edit the story on paper. I first baulked at this fact because it uses so much paper and is is so big and costs money, but it’s really advisable. You just don’t pick up the same mistakes that you do on the computer.
4) Insert the paper edits onto the computer. This can be done either per section basis or all at once. In larger works, I do it per chapter because I might not remember what I meant.
5) Read it through again, either on paper or on computer. This is to make sure that you don’t forget things like periods or have extra sentences that you forgot to delete. (I don’t do this step on smaller works though, for some reason.)
6) I think this is when I’m done and it’s finished. Now just find a title.
I’m on step 5 with Shad and step 3 (paper edit) with Kontyo right now. Personally, I like writing it much better than editing but I learned that I need to have both if I want anything decent to come out of it. Someone (a famous author, but who escapes me) said something along the lines of write fast and edit later. Also, editing is the key to good writing.
So, although I dislike doing it, I’m off to go edit more.
Not really, but at least with draft one of Kontyo. I’m thinking I’m going to end up naming it something about the Void of Space or Space’s Maw or something like that. The idea being that a) that’s Kontyo’s first reaction to space from inside a shuttle, that it’s vast and open and never ending. Later on, he keeps someone from disappearing into that said void of space. B) Space swallowed up Kontyo in the end. (Which reminds me, I’m not done. I have one paragraph to write. Such as life. (My brother keeps using that phrase, so I am now doing as such.)
In some ways, I like the story. It is different in a way but I like the character. It has a lesson too, about responsibility and the need for it. I really like the ending, more or less, although I suppose we’ll see how it is when I read it through once. I only hope that it looks as good as I think it is now. We shall see. Someday, I will post it as well too.
Tomorrow, I think I will start to edit it.
wishes to write
I wanted to write one section of each story that I’m current writing over break. Rather failed at that today.
See, between mindskill and Kontyo, I have two stories. Kontyo is for a writing contest and due next month. Midskill is due whenever. Today, I wrote a lot of Kontyo, practically the whole thing. It looks like it’s going to be about twenty pages, which I don’t think is too bad.
I’m aiming though for 17,000 words because I want to enter in the Writer’s of the Future writing contest if I do well with Kontyo at the DWU writing contest. I’m hopeful too, although I fear that I’m putting too much work into it. They didn’t give a page limit or anything and unlike a lot of the people who enter into the contest, I didn’t take the guy’s contest.
Alas, I will find out soon enough. I think though that I will be sorely disappointed if I do lose in way, just because I’ve won so many from previous contests. At the same time, I want to see how good I actually am. I think I am, once I fix something up, but is that really true? I suppose we shall see.
Anyway, two more sections left to write of Kontyo and then I am done. Yay!
I find myself writing a lot with male characters. I’m not sure why. Maybe in part because I do think that men are more superior in some areas, namely, the areas that I write. I don’t not have female characters; I just do a lot with male characters.
(Just to give you an idea: in Hope–Senior, and Richard. Female–Hope and maybe Agatha and Lisa. In Shad–Shad, Kontyo, plus a number of minor male characters such as Vaul, Emin, and Dr. P.. Female, Aurora and Kayla. In codename mindskill–Isaiah, Miles, Karl, Lucas, Eric. Female, VAnessa and Jessica. In Kontyo–I think I’m going to only have one brief appearance by a female. Giant’s Wife–Heddwyn and Pauldor (although I do have Jacey and Eva to offset them.))
I guess part of me figures that so long as I stay away from love stories (which I’m not doing with Eric), I should be fine with writing male characters. I think I view female and males as basically the same. Which I find strange because I was reading that Woolf found there to be very little difference between male and females.
I don’t know. But I do find this fact that I write male characters so often slightly disturbing, because maybe there is more that I don’t know about.
My school has a writing contest, for which I am very excited. See, I entered in five contests during the four years I qualified for it in Minnesota. EAch year, I did rather well and actually my writing level improved between contests. (To the point I thought mine was better than the one who won first place during the last contest.)
I really want to have a clue about how well I write however. Because I think I write rather well (seeing my blog does not count. I’m lazy and don’t even halfway edit this) but I honestly don’t know. Sometimes I think I write very poorly. (LIke Giant’s Wife I think came out poorly, although don’t think you know about that story yet. I shall post a summery of it maybe.) A writing contest is, in part, a good way to gauge how well I write.
So I began to write for it today. I’ve been throwing around a few ideas in my head. One involves something about two people from two different social classes who becomes friends and are later caught doing something bad. The one in the higher class is only slightly punished whereas the one in the lower class is banished.
Another one is about a group of people doing genetic research scientists who are bombed/attacked because someone just found out she was pregnant and had questioned everything they do. (Because they work with embryos and fetuses). This was loosely based on the song Held by Natalie Grant. (Which, I honestly don’t know what the song is about, but it would be cool to write a story like this one)
Finally, I’m doing a pre-story to Shad. This one focuses instead on the captain in Shad when he first became a sweeper. He starts out very immature and irresponsible and has to change to survive. Based on what I have played around in my head, it might turn out very cool.
That all being explained, I think the first section came out so, so. I forgot all of the immature things I wanted to do but hopefully people realize that they are playing with water guns while around computers. And I like how I have it set up where they look like they are younger, perhaps sixteen, and then Kontyo (who the story is about) says that he is twenty-one. So we’ll see after I finish writing everything. (And hopefully, it is something good enough to win.)
On another note, I’m reading “Moon Is a Harsh Mistress” by Heinlein and it is surprising how much his generally idea with the prison colony matches with my idea of Shad and the sweepers. Only that with Shad, they are trying to just act normal and in that book, they are trying to be free of the evil communistic type government. I guess that goes to show that there are no new ideas in writing, just new presentations.