Final Edits. The End. (Almost.)
Today I’m starting on final edits for A Well-Timed Murder, the second in the Agnes Lüthi mystery series. I have a couple main objectives: trimming and accelerating. There will likely be a few other changes to specific words, responses to my editor’s questions or requests for clarifications and other minor fiddling. I like this phase of writing when my mind is already on another book and the tasks are more concrete. That’s not to say creativity isn’t at the heart of all edits – what to trim isn’t about cutting every 5th word, it’s about cutting precisely the right words. Accelerating the story at a specific point feels like surgery. Don’t get carried away and add complications, try to bring all of the existing ones together. It’s a finite problem. These final edits also take place weeks after the last time I’ve looked at the manuscript and time helps. I’ll try to bring a fresh eye to the project while remembering that this is the end…. The finish line is in sight and everything I do should be about making it better and tighter…. All of the new ideas that plague a writer’s mind belong in the next book. What’s your experience of final edits? Panic or pleasure?