Old 08-05-2018, 02:24 PM   #1
MindsMirror
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Additional Editor

We may be in need of an additional editor.

Our most recent story Summer Sabbatical has gotten comments that it would "benefit from a copy editor and, perhaps, a story editor."

We generally write brother & sister stories, but this one was an aunt & nephew that used alternating POV.

If you've read our work and are still interested, drop us a note.

-MM
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Last edited by MindsMirror : 08-26-2018 at 07:50 PM. Reason: Story went live but still looking for help
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Old 08-26-2018, 07:55 PM   #2
MindsMirror
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We've gone through the Volunteer Editor Program, but could still use some additional help.
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Old 08-27-2018, 09:16 PM   #3
John988
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Well, I took a look at the first little bit, and the answer is pretty obvious: punctuation. Most of your sentences are run-ons, and you are missing a ton of punctuation in your sentences. Let's look at this: "Dad's deep voice asked and my ears perked up as I continued down the hall certain he was talking about me." You need commas, like this: Dad's deep voice asked[,] and my ears perked up[,] as I continued down the hall[,] certain he was talking about me."

To put it bluntly: you don't need an editor; you need a teacher. You may be able to find an editor who will walk you through a small section of your writing, but you really need to work on the basics, before you send it to an editor.

This is pretty common on Lit. People jump in feet first, not experienced in writing, and get this kind of feedback from their readers. My suggestion is to find an editor who will edit a small section and actually explain the reason behind the edits; then you need to read--a lot. The best way to become a better writer is to read good writing. Now, yes, you need to practice to develop your craft, but you need a pool of knowledge to draw from, otherwise you're just flailing about in the dark, uncertain as to why you aren't getting a good reception.

And when I say, "you need to read," I do not mean other stories on Lit. There are some fantastic authors on here, but most, well, aren't. Find established fiction writers from the mainstream world and read their stuff. You're not reading like the average person with a book, though. You're reading like an author. As you read, pay attention to paragraph formatting, syntax, diction, punctuation, imagery, metaphor, and... well, there's a lot more; I'm not going to keep listing the points.

Writing well isn't easy. It takes time, practice, and perspective, and you're at the point where you need to learn how to write better, not get an editor.

Don't take it personally, but sometimes you need to be told it like it is.

Also, the Volunteer Editor portal that you were using doesn't work. Instead, go to the "Available to Edit ~~~ August 2018" thread (it's a sticky on the Editor's Forum). That's a list of editors who are available to edit for that month. That'll obviously change to "Available to Edit ~~~ September 2018," but you get it.
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Last edited by John988 : 08-27-2018 at 09:29 PM.
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Old 08-29-2018, 03:41 PM   #4
hadruprider
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The writing is very dull. I couldn't get beyond the first page of the 19. Some of the sentences are hard to make sense of, like the one about the sun and the corner. When it got to Tim's calculus and then his macaroni cheese I just gave up. I don't think this is going to win any prizes.
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:20 PM   #5
MindsMirror
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Thanks for the information on punctuation. We often get comments that we've used too many commas and now opt to leave out any that are optional. It does appear we could use some more to separate phrases.

Short choppy sentences make a story feel like things are happening rapidly, so we tend toward longer information packed sentence structures. They do become run-ons at times.

While these and other issues exist in many/most of our stories, they do fairly well. Summer Sabbatical is getting lots of views and is scoring nicely so far. Quixotic Rapprochement received similar comments and got third place in the same contest two years ago. Winning the prize isn't the goal of being in the contest; writing a good story that people like and don't feel interrupted while reading is.

Again if you've read our stories and want to help edit drop us a note (PM or Contact).

Cheers and good luck with your efforts.
-MM
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Old 08-30-2018, 11:02 PM   #6
John988
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Don't confuse well received with well written. The Lit readership... well... It isn't very discerning. Not all! But a fair bit. Authors can post pretty crappy content on here and get 5s. Seriously. I've seen it happen.

To address the two points you just made:

Your sentences aren't long and information-packed. They are short, and they are choppy. Read classic literature, and you'll see what long, information-packed sentences really are.

Sentences don't "become" run-ons. They are written as such, either because you had a brain fart and forgot the punctuation, or you are disinterested in grammar.

Your original post made me think that you were genuinely interested in bettering yourselves, but this post makes it seem like you are just pretending, like you can point to this post and say, "Hey, we tried." I put some actual time and thought into my reply because I thought that it would do some good. Now, I'm pretty sure that I--you--wasted my time.

It's frustrating, and clearly, it was a dumb move on my part.

So, to put that aside, if all you want is ratings and views, good for you; keep doing what you're doing; plenty of authors are here for that reason. But if you actually want to write better (well), you need to take your lumps and go through the process.
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