Writing: the job

Isn’t writing a glamorous pursuit?

We writers can predict the future of the world (Orwell), become billionaires (Rowling) or dream about it (Hull).

I do dream, night and day, about a book, on a shelf, in a store, in a competition, receiving an award. All those things do happen, maybe someday to me.

Until then, there’s the job. Not one book, great or trashy, has been written by those fabled 100 monkeys and their typewriters. Each book is written one word at a time – with punctuation – by a mere human who, like me, has to shift and sort those words until they tell the desired story in the desired way.

Here’s a page from a novella I’m editing at the moment.

Not every page needs that much re-jigging, thank goodness, but many do. I think I’ve edited this book four or five times, and now it is being checked by my trusted proofreader.

The glamour may come later, but it never will if the job isn’t done first. Meanwhile, hand me that red pen, will you?

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