Editing Tip #45


The Believability Factor Revisited – Pt.1: Pre-drafting ~

Brain Thinking by zcool.com.cn

Brain Thinking by zcool.com.cn

I’ve touched on this idea several times in various other posts but it’s a valid one worth taking the time to get right. Whether you’re a non-fiction writer (Memoir, creative non-fiction), general fiction/literary writer, or genre writer world building is an essential element to any ‘story.’

I’ve mentioned before how the key to drawing in and keeping a reader is by being consistent in the rules and visual setting of where ever your story takes place, but I haven’t really touched on how to go about this in the pre-drafting stage – because that’s not editing right?


You begin editing your ideas as you develop premiss, plot, and point of view. Potential problems creep into the planning stage and must be pulled apart in order to perfect them.

Are you tired of all the Ps yet 😉

Keeping a note book or separate file on your preferred electronic device for all the ideas you’ve ‘settled on keeping’ will help. Maps are great too. If your book takes place in New York, print out a map of the area where the bulk of the action will take place (even if you live there). If you’re creating a new or alternate world, draw one – it doesn’t matter if you can’t draw – no one will see this map but you. It’s important to keep your facts straight. The local tavern might be up the street but you need to settle on a name for it and know if it’s by the Asian Grocery Store or the Spell Casters’ Herb Shop, and not the Vacuum Repair Store (which is actually across the road and handles all makes and models of brooms, too).

By keeping track of where places are in your world and getting them out of your head and onto something tactile, your planning, and later writing, will require less tweaking and editing.

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Categories: Editing

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