Monday, January 31, 2011

Read Throughs

Why are multiple read throughs important?

Because, last time I checked, I was human and I miss things.

Example: Katherine wanted to know if he learned anything knew.

What's wrong with above sentence? Different word, right sound . . . wrong for the sentence!

So, changed knew to new and all was right with the world. Okay, all was right with the sentence. The world, last time I checked, was in sore need of some fixing!

So, multiple read throughs of a manuscript are important because we - I - miss things. For me, that's the Number One reason not to jump the gun and submit a first, second or third draft of a manuscript for query. You - I - are going to miss something, and that something (knew vs. new) could make the difference between an agent saying Yay versus Nay.

Then again, it might not. I don't know enough about agents to make that statement with 100% accuracy.

This writing journey I have taken on, this joy in my life, isn't a race to the finish. It's a slow progression from start to finish with many stops on the way. It doesn't matter if others out there have agents or success before me. All that matters is that I do the best I can.

In order for me, nobody else, to do that best, I need the multiple read throughs. I need the slow and steady pace to ensure that when I do query, when the agent ask for my manuscript, I am submitting the best manuscript I can to said agent. I don't want him/her to come across the sentence above and write me off as inexperienced. I want said agent to come across the correct sentence and somehow - fingers crossed - know that I take this writing journey seriously.



Tess said...

it does matter, scott.

and, I had a line about how the smell of jucyfruit gum lifted from every "poor".

oops. luckily my beta caught it before I sent that ms out.

Domey Malasarn said...

A lot of my characters have had thick and thin waists, LOL.

I think read throughs are also important because you experience the whole story in one or a few sittings. I can rarely hold an entire book in my head, so reading it through with no interruption really helps me see the whole story.

Scott said...

@Tess - I think it's the words that sound alike but have different meaning are the hardest. My brain is thinking the right word but my fingers type the wrong one. Ha.

@Domey - I agree about the one sitting thing. Normally, on read throughs, I'm just trying to catch the wrong words or the lack of words, e.g., forget to put 'to' in a sentence - it makes a difference. I know as many times as I read through the MS, I'll miss something. Hopefully, my future editor will catch what I miss. Hopefully.