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The Editing process

The editing process is still ongoing, I have struggled to overcome many, many obstacles throughout this process of editing, from software to devices, and people not to mention I am an independent unknown author which this is not my first book I have written and with the sequel will not be the last.

I first started this process by a burst of inspiration, this was sudden yet I have experienced this before so I was acquainted by this notion to write, quickly I started visualizing the main character and his surroundings, I knew he would have a difficult childhood and obstacles to adapting to society.

This pushed forward from a main character to other characters moving in and out of his life, yet I could not figure the main reason why I was writing this or how the outcome would be.

So I asked myself what am I good at doing or my hobbies, the first few answers I have written upon in the past so the next was something I was researching for a paper in my English class, it so happens a few of my instructors were very interested in the psychology of killers, this would begin my process of researching into the subject and the authors of sed genre.

I also incorporated my experiences within the life of the main character to convey a sense of realism, this was a more daunting task than I initially thought.

When I first wrote two of my earlier books I did so by starting with hand written work on printer paper, I started writing other works but each time it never moved past thirty or forty pages and that spark was gone, realizing this, I made a rule if I started any work I would do so hand written as with all of my works prior, if the story could push beyond the thirty – forty page cutoff point then this work would be moved to computer, once here the next trial would be the first hundred pages I would made note when I hit that mark because at this point I had to review what I wrote, and had a list of questions to answer that would determine if the writing ended at that point or continued.

At this point I had made an effort to inflict my unedited work to a few friends for reading and review, meanwhile I continued to write.

During this process and continuing forward I didn’t have a name for the book, and I would not think of a name until much later after the book was written yet this still was an issue up to the date of publication.

Writing what the main character was saying, his interactions, how he committed such acts I could only describe was like watching a movie unfold in my mind, and if I wanted to change certain aspects I simply rewound then played the new scene, however trying to write this down as it played out is a lot like watching a movie and having a person write it all down without stopping the movie. You must get the dialogue, the essence of the situation and persona of the characters, the backdrop and mood etc., all while the movie played. This is a bit tasking and impossible to accomplish.

So, my first three readers were intrigued by the story yet stated grammatical errors which I was grateful for their feedback.

Later as I stopped just before the ending chapter, I had my first friend start the editing process I also worked on the editing, adding, and correcting any issues that would have come up. Adding more details, cutting away details that seem to be to much, as the first software issue would happen.

In the story the main character refers to other characters as objects, slang words, and other off the wall statements, for the readers seeing this would not create an issue unfortunately Microsoft word document like to autocorrect or simply just correct while giving no emphasis on context this would poor into thumb drives, and other devices which will correct the words without prompting myself, as this was happening I had to go back and re-correct parts where I once made corrections, sometimes the words were erased from the book, or restructured, or saved to an earlier format. I could not begin to convey how irritating this is or that it continued.

This problem engulfed most of my time at that point, a mounting issue that seemed to have no end in sight.

Correcting this issue in settings still did not help much, the problems were persistent and numerous; I could say I had never hated Microsoft as much in the past as when I was editing the first book while many issues kept magnifying, the root cause was Microsoft word document and coping to other

devices, this software had no problem with correcting one’s work as it performed this task without a human perception of language and abnormalities, the imperfections, incompleteness or blurring the lines of conflicted duality of how Human perception and interaction within self and outside reality around us to my understanding has yet to be fully understood by computer software be it AI or not,

This fundamental human concept completely eluded Microsoft word document as it pushed forward correct words that it found to be incorrect within its fixed program of context without the author’s agreement/or opportunity to suggest to fix it.

Microsoft updates would automatically switch these once off settings to be back on as one opens the document it starts making corrections as the settings are back on, discovering this issue I realized I had to start back on page one and recall all the corrections by memory with the settings returned to off this time again!

This problem on a hundred-page document, then two hundred- and three-hundred-page document, this was an overwhelming challenge, as I read along, I realized some of the auto changes that was switched off, the words didn’t make sense to the context of the paragraph and yet it still corrected.

At this point I was editing; also my friend was editing all the while our work was being undermined and at the speed of eye by Microsoft document. Feeling a sense of defeat and frustration I was slowly looking to calling the completion of the book to be finished and not published.

After a few days away from this Microsoft fiasco I decided to complete the final chapter and so doing this with a completed manuscript I allowed my second person to read it, then I offered my first which this person turned down time and time again, these two individuals have no part, discussion or given any piece of information of any kind regarding the book(s) website or merchandise and that is all I have to say about them.

My first reader (Complete book) and next couple have supported the book from the start they are mentioned by dedication.

The next challenge to overcome would be hiring a professional editor, being that I still had oversight and full authority to approve all changes of the book, it was the editor’s request to make certain major changes to the book which I completely disagreed.

I would argue with my editor about the main characters perspective on people or name calling, or his violence, perhaps I could tone it down, some of the names of the characters, some areas specific to discussion which sounds similar to the main character at times, which I had explained to my editor that this was done on purpose given the written perspective of the main character, that it’s through his lens that he perceives what the conversation(s), its context that is bias to him since the main character is narrating the story most of the time.

There are times where other characters seem to have a unique voice which this is meant to show difference between the main character’s take on the conversation versus the true identity of the other character in the story, I wanted to exploit this fundamental reality to the reader, to see how there is truly a difference between a perspective in hearing and seeing also speaking and seeing while engaged in conversation with others.

I was told some of the content material is too controversial and too radical that could site violence, and I could not believe what I would being told.

The sexual and violent nature within the church has already unfolded I am simply writing to this end, the violence against women and serial killers have been around for some time but those stories are not this story.

Without giving away portions of the story, much of the violence is too violent mixed with graphic sexual content, if I would change or get rid of certain sections of the story which I declined again.

I would poor into the story reviewing what was suggested by the editor, yet I found no reason to change perhaps at times I could elaborate on situations within the story but not make major changes that was suggested.

The methods of killing. The investigator should be a man. I said absolutely not, the contrast between the investigator and the main character works seemingly well.

To change the twist of the story, the minor parts leading to and ultimately changing the plot, I would say

No, No, NO!

As the editing continues to move forward, I can safely say and so does the continuous struggle to argue factual reasons why certain parts to the story need to remain, the only thing that needs to change would be adding content, elaborating on what is already there. Yes, I am very difficult with the editor, and I have been much critical to myself with this work, as with my editor as he is bent on changing aspects to my story, I invite the different perspective with another inquiry.

why? And explain the validity of your suggestions backed by logical reasons and I will give it equal thought.

For the advancement of technology as I had started writing this story up to now, I see how voice to write makes writing faster but not simple, I see how changes in updates and devices as easy and convenient to perform, most always transforms a file, the essence to a shell of what it once was, spellcheck and grammar as complacent for a user to become dependent on, discovers with devastating consequences that programs don’t understand human nature, behavior.

Write a book but start with a professional to edit, illustrate and publish. Follow what you want to do in this life, mistakes will happen, obstacles will come and go, and if what you have resonate with yourself, and others, then you can be content and humble of the accomplishment.

I will end this here, I hope you all enjoyed what I wrote, i tried to keep the profanity to a minimum, through this process there was a lot.

Always your fan,

The readers!

J. Cabral…


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