Editing: Screen, Paper, Voice?

The words have flowed from your mind to the computer. The story has formed. Your first draft has been laid bare and it is time to edit. There are 3 tried and true methods: edit on screen, edit on paper and read aloud.

What technique do you use? I used to print a hard copy and edit with a good old fashioned pen. These days, however, I try to be green and save the trees. However, as I found myself stationed as a car passenger for a three hour drive this morning, where computer use literally meant a laptop affair, I opted for a hard copy review of a chapter.

I must say my mind does pick up typos much better on a piece of paper. Why is that? Is it the tilt of eyes – looking down instead of straight ahead? Is it because my generation was raised reading books instead of computer screens? Will the electronic generation edit better on screen?

At any given time you should employ all three of the screen, paper, voice techniques. My in-car experience has reminded me of the power of paper.

What is your favorite mode of editing?


One Response to Editing: Screen, Paper, Voice?

  1. Fran Cain says:

    Jill, I find I engage my creativity better when I write with a pen and paper. But I edit much better on the computer. It quickly becomes messy editing on paper. With the computer it’s easy to move sentences around and experiment with wording.

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