Day 79: Editing and Revision

I put a great deal of thought into what I am writing.  I have a goal for every post.  I want my reader to feel a certain way.  I want you to laugh, to imagine, to appreciate, to feel.  Thus, the way I set up my stories is very important to me.  To get the effect I am after, I need to make sure I present and build the story to bring about the intended response.

More than once, I have published a post, and then in retrospect, realized that it did not sound the way I wanted it to sound.  Sometimes, I played the words in my head and I knew it was not quite right.  I knew something needed to be rewritten, changed, made clearer.  Other times, someone pointed out to me that the wording was different from my intended meaning or tone.  I was being misconstrued or unclear.  The piece needed to be worked over to be made better.  I always tell my students that revision and editing are the most important parts of the writing process.  What kind of teacher would I be I if I did not heed my own instruction?

Posts that have changed:

Day 1: Birth Day!  The very first post was altered!  After about two weeks, I knew I wasn’t going to forget my password.  I took out a sentence.
Day 4: Dishes.  Four days in and confusion over my intent.  I reworded a section.
Day 7: Mirror, Mirror on the Wall.  In my defense, we were on our way out the door and I did not hit spell check.  Upon rereading it, I saw too many typos to count.
Day 8: The Neighborhood Bar.   A friend said it was confusing.  I rewrote a paragraph and broke the paragraphs differently.
Day 15: Happy Birthday Maggie.  Upon rereading, I took out a confusing section in the middle.
Day 34: When are They Old Enough?  After a conversation with my aunt, I decided I did not elucidate well enough.
Day 48: Any Given Sunday, 1976. Editing error.  A friend pointed out a word error I did not see.  Quick fix.
Day 66: Preoccupied with Health.  After some consideration, I went back to try to make it funnier.
Day 77: Wait! I think I have a coupon!  Thought about it.  The first paragraph seemed redundant to me.  I took out a section.
Day 78: What We Talk About While Drinking Beer.  Three people said it was hostile.  I wasn’t going for hostile.  I was going for funny.  When I said it out loud it was funny, but you can’t hear my inflection on the page.

The changes are subtle, but in each case, I think revision and editing improved the piece of writing.  I am not a hypocrite.  When I say editing and revision matter, I mean it.

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