An editing process

I almost always hate the editing process. This is probably because during editing I see my novels at their worst: warts, blemishes, bad hair, no makeup to conceal the flaws. It isn’t just that I randomly stumble upon these things while I’m reading through the novel, but that I actively look for them. I suppose the final stages are often the worst, when I can hardly bear to read that problem chapter one more time, and as for the bits that aren’t problematic, I hardly even read them at all any more.

Having said all this, though, at the moment I’m enjoying the first edit of ‘Frozen in Crime’. I seem to remember when writing it, however, that I skimmed lightly across the first fifteen or so chapters almost as if skiing down a well-marked piste, and it was only after that I ran into a forest of problems, with the final chapter attempting to hack through some narrative undergrowth that resisted being  tidied up. I must admit the comparison with skiing is purely imaginary, since I got the idea at quite a young age that going downhill fast was a recipe for disaster, so I’ve never even attempted it.

I’ve just reached the end of chapter fifteen in my first pass through, and with the above paragraph in mind, I am slightly dreading having to go through the rest of the novel. When this happens, I always end up trying very hard to disguise the join between the place where inspiration stopped dead and complications set in. I wonder if any of my readers will spot it this time!

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