Writers Review - Self-Editing for Fiction Writers

May 22, 2023
David Sunnyside

fiction writers review

Writers Review

For many people, reading fiction helps them connect with other people. When a reader takes the time to become intimate with a fictional character, she experiences that person’s innermost thoughts and emotions, which is an important aspect of social interaction. Fiction can also take readers to new places, where they can experience the sights, sounds, smells and tastes of unfamiliar settings.

Fiction can teach us about ourselves, too. For example, a story about someone struggling with depression can show us that we are not alone in our struggles. In addition, stories about relationships help us understand how people interact with one another. They can give us an idea of what it feels like to be a parent or how it is to have an affair.

For some writers, writing can be a very isolating experience. Whether they are reluctant to share unpolished drafts with their family and friends, or they have a hard time finding a critique group that will take them seriously, a large portion of a writer’s time is spent alone in front of the computer screen. This can be especially demoralizing if the book they are working on is not going anywhere.

This week’s book, Renni Browne and Dave King’s Self-Editing for Fiction Writers, addresses some of the ways that a writer can work on her own manuscripts without the help of a critique group or workshop. The emphasis is on sentence and paragraph-level composition, which fits with their goal of helping writers produce readable prose. However, the authors don’t get into broader topics like pacing, world building, characterization, foreshadowing or tension as much as they might have, since those are issues that require a critique partner or a workshop setting to discuss.

David Sunnyside
Co-founder of Urban Splatter • Digital Marketer • Engineer • Meditator
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