5 Simple Formulas For Editing your Novel Faster

By Team Azuni

Editing a novel is a time-consuming and challenging process. It requires careful attention to detail and a willingness to revise and refine your work until it is the best it can be. However, there are some simple formulas you can use to make the editing process faster and more efficient. In this article, we will explore five simple formulas that can help you edit your novel faster.

  1. The Four-Pass Edit Formula

The Four-Pass Edit Formula is a simple four-step process that can help you edit your novel faster. Here’s how it works:

  • Pass 1: Read through your entire manuscript and make notes about any major issues that need to be addressed. This could include plot holes, inconsistencies in character development, or major grammatical errors.
  • Pass 2: Go through your manuscript again, this time focusing on sentence-level issues such as awkward phrasing, repetitive language, and unnecessary adverbs or adjectives.
  • Pass 3: Edit for style and tone. Make sure your writing is consistent and flows well, and that your tone matches the genre and mood of your story.
  • Pass 4: Proofread your manuscript for any remaining errors or typos.

By breaking the editing process down into these four distinct passes, you can tackle each step more efficiently and effectively. This formula also ensures that you are addressing major issues before getting bogged down in smaller, more nit-picky details.

  1. The “Kill Your Darlings” Formula

The “Kill Your Darlings” formula is a simple yet effective way to cut unnecessary elements from your manuscript. As writers, we often become attached to certain scenes, characters, or pieces of dialogue that we think are essential to our story. However, these elements may not actually serve a purpose in the overall narrative.

To use this formula, go through your manuscript and identify any scenes, characters, or pieces of dialogue that do not advance the plot or contribute to the development of your characters. These elements may be “darlings” that you are reluctant to part with, but by removing them, you can streamline your story and make it more engaging for readers.

  1. The “Read Aloud” Formula

Reading your manuscript aloud is an excellent way to catch errors and awkward phrasing that you might miss when reading silently. This formula is especially helpful for identifying issues with dialogue, as reading it aloud can help you determine whether it sounds natural or stilted.

To use this formula, read your manuscript aloud either to yourself or to a trusted friend or family member. As you read, make note of any sections that feel clunky or difficult to read, and revise them accordingly.

  1. The “Reverse Outlining” Formula

A reverse outline is a tool that can help you identify weaknesses in your plot or character development. Instead of creating an outline before you write your novel, a reverse outline involves creating an outline after you have already written the first draft.

To use this formula, read through your manuscript and make note of the major plot points, character arcs, and themes. Once you have identified these elements, create an outline that summarizes them in order. This will help you identify any plot holes, inconsistencies, or areas where your story could be strengthened.

  1. The “Beta Reader” Formula

Finally, the Beta Reader formula is a simple way to get feedback on your manuscript from trusted readers. Beta readers are individuals who read your manuscript and provide feedback on elements such as plot, character development, pacing, and overall readability.

To use this formula, identify a group of trusted beta readers and ask them to read your manuscript and provide feedback. This can be an excellent way to get an outside perspective on your work and identify areas where it could be improved.

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