Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Printing Epiphany

Okay - epiphany is probably too strong a word. But it's close!


I've heard/read about people printing out their manuscripts before. They've told me they find it easier to spot mistakes or other issues with the writing. I didn't believe it. I mean, it's the same story on the screen as it is on the paper, right?

So, despite my Scottish background/personality (we are REALLY careful with money in our family & proud of it :)), I printed out the ms. In concession, I shrunk the font and reduced the margins, but left it double spaced. Single spacing would make it too hard to mark up. My cheap genes winced, but went along with it.

And here's the epiphany - everyone who has done this is brilliant! There's something about the story being printed on paper that makes my eyes and my brain see it differently. What a great surprise. I was able to tighten up in several spots, see a few redundancies, and see the flow a little better. Awesome.

Jean Oram (@jeanoram), Medeia Sharif (@sharifwrites) and Terry O'Dell (@authorterryo) all responded to my "Wow, it works" tweet. They all do print out their work and know it works. Terry prints out her output daily to catch all the issues right away.

How about you? Do you print out your work? Daily? Once in a blue moon? When you're in the polishing stage?

146 comments:

  1. I'm glad you've found a trick that is helpful! I agree. I have printed out many copies of manuscripts. While I feel bad doing this, it really makes a big difference.

    Congrats on your win over at Market My Words!

    Marissa

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  2. I've printed out each of my books after the first draft. You can mark up your pages with notes all over the place. Far easier to work subsequent drafts this way, than trying to flip back and forth on the computer with one screen.

    To me it's worth every red cent. (Hugs)Indigo

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  3. Marissa - it really was helpful! I was so surprised :)

    And thank you - I hadn't made it to Shelli's site, so I just popped on over - I gotta say I just squealed out loud! :)

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  4. Indigo - that makes sense - I might have to try it with the next story. I'm thrilled how many little things I spotted :)

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  5. Hi Jemi,
    Like you, I hate to waste paper, so I read and edit several times on the screen. Then I print out a copy for a final edit, which generally turns into more than one edit.
    But it really does help catch mistakes or places that need tweeking, as does reading it out loud.
    My concession is to re-use the paper and print on both sides.
    Donna
    http://donnasbookpub.blogspot.com

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  6. Donna - exactly - waste bugs me. I'm a pretty environmentally conscious person.

    I did that too - I printed out in chunks, then reused it on the back side :)

    Thanks for the tips!

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  7. I do print it out. After I've edited it on screen, I'll give it a go around on paper too. It's amazing the things you catch that way. :)

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  8. Jennifer - it really is. I'm hoping I'm nearing the final rounds. I'll definitely print the next story at this stage next time.

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  9. I tend to do most of my proof reading on my PC screen, but must admit that when I've printed out hardcopy samples for friends and family to go over, I find the odd discrepancy myself that I'd missed earlier.

    Surely though, this is going against the whole 'paperless environment' idea.

    One day, when we download ALL of our books electronically, printing our manuscripts for proofreading purposes may be the only time in their lives where ink actually hits paper.

    And what are all the trendy Apple gadget freaks supposed to do?

    Ah! I've just had my own epiphany!

    How about they print them out, then re-scan them so they can read them on their ipads?

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  10. Hi Jemi!! I print out my MS when I'm finished with the second draft. I definitely agree that holding the story on paper transforms the way I "see" it, and ease of editing goes to a new level.

    :D

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  11. Dave - lol - you always crack me up!

    I am pretty careful about how I treat our environment, which is one of the reasons I've never printed out my stuff before. But it did help me in this later editing stage.

    Maybe seeing it on an ereader would be different from seeing it on a screen. Hmmm...???

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  12. On-screen editing has never been adequate for me. But I'm with you in the pennypinching. I'm also a bit of a tree hugger. So...I snag scrap paper from recycling bins on campus and print on the back sides. I also find that 1.5 line spacing is adequate for editing purposes.

    I print out scenes I'm working on every day or two. Whole chapters get printed when I want to read for flow and typos.

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  13. Nicole - It's so nice to have you back from France - although you must be missing it like crazy still!

    I'm pretty good at editing on the screen, but you're right, there's just something different about the paper version.

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  14. I lothe to splash the cash on the ink and paper, but I do this too. I've printed out each draft of my work. I still miss stuff (I wish I was perfect and didn't, my purse can't handle it, lol) but it helps.

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  15. Laurel - great tips! I'll try the 1.5 spacing. Sounds like it would be fine.

    I'm a tree hugger too. We do recycle pretty much everything in our city, but it's not the same as not using it at all.

    For now I think I'll reserve it for one or two stages of editing. :)

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  16. Lindsay - lol - that's exactly how I feel too! But if it makes the writing stronger, I'm willing to give it a shot! :)

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  17. I printed it off about a month ago, and the cat's been sleeping on it. I think I feel pretty guilty about the mass of paper. I really need to just sit down and get to it, though I printed it off two sided and single spaced. Maybe I just ended up killing a tree for the fun of it :( You definitely think the double-spaced is worth it?

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  18. I print out after every re-write. I know it's wasting a lot of paper, but it is necessary for me to see it on the printed page. I miss a lot reading on the screen. Good for you, Jemi.
    Karen

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  19. Rosie - lol - love it. The cat's bed :)

    I really did find the double space easier to read and write on. I tend to circle and use arrows and add in when I'm editing. The space was nice. Although I'll probably use Laurel's suggestion and go with 1.5 spacing rather than 2 next time.

    Thanks for dropping by :)

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  20. Karen - I think we all have to find out what works for our styles and our brains. I'm pretty used to the computer screen and can do a lot of editing on it without much difficulty. But... it was nice to see the ms differently when I printed it. I'll definitely do it again before a final polish.

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  21. Well, I've never written a book but yes, there's something different about hard-copies...

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  22. Agnes - yes there is. Not quite sure why it's different, but it really is :)

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  23. I hear you pain about printing it out. I think of the cost and the waste. Having said that it is true. I won't print it out until I’ve proofed on my computer and think I've ready to sent it to a beta then maybe I'll print it and give it a once over. ;)

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  24. Thanks, Jami. Maybe I'll do it a couple of chapters at a time to ease my monetary/environmental guilt :)

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  25. This made me giggle for some reason... :) Anyway... I used to print manuscripts out after the first draft, but now I print them more toward the end... for final read-throughs, usually after I've caught all the mistakes I'm going to catch on the computer and my eyes start twitching.

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  26. Holly - yeah - it's hard to think of the cost & the waste.

    I followed pretty much that pattern exactly - thanks for the input :)

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  27. Rosie - you're welcome - I think a little bit at a time is a good idea :)

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  28. Valerie - yup - my eyes are twitching so I guess I'm at that stage :)

    I'm hoping I'm at the final polish stage now - we'll see!

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  29. I always have to print out my MS. I'm with you, I find so many more mistakes and I love being able to mark it up and tweak sentences. It makes such a difference!

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  30. I'm a cheapo too Jemi! :)

    But YES! It does work. It's amazing the things you see on the printed page that you didn't see on the screen.

    And I'll admit that I cheat a teensy bit by using my day job's printer. Shhh...

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  31. Renae - Exactly. I was surprised how many paragraphs I changed. Just little tweaks, but I could see the flow much more easily. :)

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  32. Karen - love it! And mum's the word :)

    It's been fun seeing the story on paper too. Although now it's all in the kindling pile! :)

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  33. Printing it out tooooootally works. I will read my printed MS for the first time in my first round of edits. But at work (I'm a journalist) we never send anything to be published until it's proofed on the page.

    Glad it was worth it for you!

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  34. Sarah - that's so interesting! I didn't realize it was common practice for journalists! I'm glad I'm following in the footsteps of some very talented people! :) Thanks!

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  35. I used to print out my work. But I make so many revisions I just back it up now. If I want to send a copy of the MS to someone for review, I email them a PDF version. Much cheaper than printing, binding, and mailing.

    Stephen Tremp

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  36. Oh it definitely works.
    I'm not a money saver (ask husband...I'm a spender), but I do try to be a good steward of our earth, SO, I do my first couple of drafts and edits on the computer. When I *think* I've got it pretty clean, I print it out and get my red ink pen in hand. I always, ALWAYS find errors that I didn't see on the screen.

    Plus, something about jotting notes with a pen in the margins on real paper that seems to free up my creative brain cells, and I always come up with great fixes and ideas to make my story better.

    Happy Tuesday, Jemi. :)
    Love,
    Lola

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  37. Stephen - I usually do everything on the laptop. My crit buddies and I email back and forth as well.

    But... I think printing it out made a difference. I did find several places to tighten the flow and avoid the redundant phrases I'm prone to use. :)

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  38. Lola - this is my first experience with printing out anything - and I did like it :)

    I'm with you on saving trees & helping out the environment, but I think it's worth it to do it near the final stages too.

    Happy Tuesday :)

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  39. I'm definitely a polishing stage kind of printer. (Okay, I'm not a printer, but you know what I mean...) I've only done so a couple of times with fiction works, but for my academic papers I do it as soon as my text starts to look like a text. And then again when it starts to look like a paper. And then finally before having the final polish before I send it off.
    I also find that printing a MS can untangle seemingly unsolvable problems and make you see much clearer what needs to be fixed. A bonus is that it often looks more professional on paper, so I feel more confident.

    The only downside is my guilty conscience for wasting paper...

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  40. Cruella - I get that guilty conscience too.

    But it does make it easier to see the little things and some big things. At least it did for me this time. I know where I need to insert another couple of scenes. And I tightened up even more :)

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  41. Oh, it does work. I first learned it back in my newspaper days. Even an article printed shows up mistakes. For some reason, we start to slide over things after we've read it on screen a few times, but see it clearly on paper.
    I wince, too, on printing whole manuscripts, but I do it single-space, small font and use post-it notes to mark issues.
    I also print out chapters every week to read to a face-to-face crit group. I'm really sorry to use so much paper and ink but the writing gets tighter.

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  42. Tricia - exactly! Things I'd read over multiple times looked fine on the screen. On paper, not so much :)

    I like the idea of small fonts/margins. I'll try a few pages single spaced next time and see how it feels.

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  43. Yes I do this too. It uses different sides of the brain or something and makes a HUGE difference. But like you I cringe-- ah the toner, ah the paper!

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  44. Karen - it does make me cringe!

    But I'll do it again, after seeing all the improvements I made :)

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  45. Well, I had the same expectation. But, since YOU recommend it, maybe I'll give it a try. My cheap genes are going bonkers though just thinking about it!

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  46. Lisa Gail - lol :)

    I know!!! I did it when I thought it was pretty well polished and I was looking for the final round, fine-tuning stuff. Glad I did.

    Good luck :)

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  47. I write poetry but when I had my book published I was amazed going through each poem how many mistakes there were that I hadn't noticed earlier.
    I suppose it is different for authors of novels and the like.
    I appreciate much work goes into getting a book published so I know look at a book in a different way, beisdes the story I think of all the prep. that must go into a published book.

    Yvonne.

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  48. Yvonne - I think poets and authors have a lot in common!

    When I write poetry I tend to do it by hand on paper. Don't know why, but the computer screen still seems too impersonal for me. Maybe because poetry scrapes right down to the soul.

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  49. Isn't it great when the lightbulb comes on?
    Yes, I do print out my work, more than once, too. I stare at a computer screen at work and I can only do that for so long!

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  50. Alex - I LOVE those lightbulb moments :)

    I use the computer at work, but not all the time - more as a teaching tool. So I'm able to do most of it on screen. I do like what I was able to do on the page!

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  51. I'm like you; I cringe when I look at the massive pile of papers I just printed and think of how much ink and paper cost. But it's so worth it! I do a few rounds of revisions on the screen, and then in my final revising, before I think it's ready to submit to agents, I print and take out a red (or green or purple) pen. It does help!

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  52. Shelley - I'm so glad I did this before querying. Between this and comments from a fabulous beta reader, I've got a few tweaks to work out. I think it's making the story tighter and stronger! :)

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  53. I try to wait and print it at the end and then mark it up like crazy. It winds up with post-its everywhere and purple pen, maybe even the occasional pink. But yeah, I do print and read it. I've found it easier to catch mistakes as well.

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  54. Lisa - I liked doing it near the end. I don't think I'd do it much more often - it's expensive, and I can catch a lot on the screen. Thanks! :)

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  55. OH my gosh. It's like the same thing as me reading my chapters out loud before getting to writer's workshop and then reading them out loud in front of a group of people from the printed paper.

    It makes a HUGE difference. Isn't it weird how that works?

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  56. I edit on screen, then edit on paper - multiple times. This is progress for me. For a long time, I couldn't edit onscreen at all - I had too many years of hardcopy editing behind me. Like Laurel, my concessions to frugality are to use space and half and print on both sides of the paper. I also keep a printed "master copy" where I note any major revisions necessary. That way when I go back into the electronic version, I can easily refer back to what needs to be done.

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  57. Tiffany - yes! exactly. Reading aloud helps me so much too. Even if my family thinks I'm nuts! :)

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  58. VR - I've always written on the computer so it's okay for most of the editing rounds. But it really did make a difference to print it out. I can imagine it would be so much easier on paper for anyone used to doing it that way!

    I even do editing of the kids' work at school on the computer - we just email back and forth.

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  59. I'm positive I would need the printed paper version to work from too! The powers that be keep saying we're going paperless in my job which scares me because as much as I LOVE the computer ... I catch more detail in print!

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  60. I agree - seeing the words on paper makes you see mistakes you cannot detect on the computer.

    I've been lazy about that lately. I should print my newest. Often, I print for a reader, edit again, and then take a last look before querying.

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  61. Beth - I do almost everything on computer - at school and at home. But I must say that final look-see was really helpful on paper!

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  62. Theresa - sounds like a good pattern. My crit buddies are around the continent so we just email and posted on a closed forum for each other to see. It works well :)

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  63. I started doing this a few years ago and agree completely. It really does work for me. I print it out single space to save paper but I highly recommend it. And please recycle the paper.

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  64. Susan - I definitely recycle the paper (or use it for kindling for campfires). We recycle a LOT here in my city.

    It's interesting how many people do this! It obviously is worth it!

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  65. I agree, Jemi. You see the writing differently when it's printed out And you can turn pages, and lay out the pages. I print 1.5 spacing instead of double. I use both sides of the paper if the paper's a new ream. Or I print on the other side of old drafts.

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  66. Ann - I think I'll definitely do the 1.5 spacing next time - that makes so much sense! I did print on both sides of the paper to help! Thanks for the tips :)

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  67. Jemi, I print out and it always works. I don't do it right away, but I do the read through on the computer first and when I do my final read through before I send it out to betas, I print it. It's such a great tool. Glad you found it!

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  68. Karen - thanks :)

    I'm glad too - it's such a fun tool. I think I'll continue to use it when I think I'm getting close to the end of revisions!

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  69. i'm used to writing/editing to paper [college trained/job honed] so find it the only way it works for me... sure, spell check helps onscreen, as does formatting, but the basics i do on hard copy, even writing longer pieces in long hand!

    once i transcribe it to the computer, i re-edit as i go, sometimes doing 6-10 of those before the last period...

    like they say, the true writing is in the rewriting

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  70. I plan to print the whole thing out when it's all finished so that I can hold it in my hands and feel like it's a real book! Well... sort of, you know what I mean ;)

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  71. Laughing Wolf - I agree - writing is rewriting. I do a lot of rounds of revising and editing. I find it easiest to focus on one thing at a time.

    I can't imagine writing out long hand anymore!

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  72. Writing Nut - I know EXACTLY what you mean!

    Holding those printed pages and knowing you've created a cohesive whole in them - nothing quite like it ... well except holding an actual book! :)

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  73. Sometimes I print it out but not a lot... and I agree, when you see it in actual print a lot more things jump out to you!

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  74. Jessica - I was so surprised to actually see things differently on paper. Still not sure why my brain sees is differently, but there's no question that it does!

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  75. Maybe because my sideline is also done on the computer everything swims after a while. I catch more of "What the...?" in print rather than on screen.
    I use any kind or color as long as one side is clean.
    Giggles and Guns

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  76. Mary - that makes sense. I do use the computer a lot at school, but more as a teaching tool, than as a personal tool.

    I printed on both sides of the paper, but only when I was done with the one side. :)

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  77. I print after the complete first draft. I also didn't think it would matter - and thought it would be easier to fix mistakes on the computer - but wow, the manuscript printed gives you a better idea of what your reader will see.
    I keep a seperate sheet for characters, setting, storyline, and then go through and make notes where I see bits that need fixing - then go back and read through again, with my notes handy. :-)

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  78. Charmaine - I think you've hit on the key. On paper it looks so much more like the finished product.

    I like the way you work - I may have to try that method out! :)

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  79. I rarely print anything anymore. Only if I really need to. But I can see where it would be good for marking on the page. All that printing would just mean more paper clutter.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

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  80. I have a scottish soul as well, so I only print when I'm ready for some serious editing.

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  81. Arlee - true - and I know you're working on decluttering your life.

    I do think I will do it again - probably at the same stage - near the end before I send it off to beta readers. I did work well for me.

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  82. Lynda - yay - another Scottish soul! I do feel pretty good about the editing I can do on the computer, but there was just something different about seeing it on paper. :)

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  83. I should do this more often! I usually print out my MS once, but sometimes it's too early in the revision process and I forget to do it again!

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  84. Lydia - I don't think I'd do it very often either - way too much money and waste for me. But there is a definite benefit for me doing it near the end of the process as well!

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  85. Isn't it amazing how printing out words on paper can make all the difference?!

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  86. Kimberly - it really is. I was honestly surprised by it. Even though other people had told they did it - I really didn't think it would work - but it did!

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  87. Wow! Did I ever get blessed by finding THIS cool blog today--all for just being on Jennifer's blog!!

    HOW COOL IS THIS???
    Great info! Funny! And a Scotswoman!!!

    Yes, I print out--AND READ ALOUD (a free daily tip) but only when it's near the sending it to Natasha, then on to the pub house stage.

    BECAUSE I am still in the starving writer IRS bracket.

    Blessings! Hope we can become bloggites!

    www.pattilacy.com/blog

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  88. Patti - Thanks :)

    It's so nice to 'meet' you!

    I'm not planning on printing out a lot - it does add up quickly! - but I liked doing it near the end. I'll pop over to your place in a minute!

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  89. I print out my novel after the first draft, just to have that sense of completion. And then I don't print it out again until the polishing stage. I need to see it hard copy!

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  90. I'm not cheap except in the "enviromental sense" - no plastic bags, hang laundry out, that sort of thing. So this prevented me from printing out my first ms.

    The lesson I learned was after I sold it and the publisher sent it to me printed out - yes, it IS different. Not sure why that is, but it is. I think pre-submission printing is worth every penny.

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  91. Talli - it seems a lot of us do! I'm not sure whether to try it after the first draft or not. Might be too scary! :)

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  92. Anne - I think you're right. It does make a difference - and I still have no clue why!!!

    For now I think I'll continue to print it when I think it's pretty well edited - and I'm looking for that polish :)

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  93. I just went and printed my first 5 chapters. Now they're snarling at me and telling me what a bad person I am because I didn't find a different computer lab that printed double sided.... We always reuse paper at home, but I'm still feeling rather guilty.

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  94. Rosie - lol :) I know what you mean! I printed off in chunks of 40 pages or so. When I was done with them, I put them back in the printer and used the other side :)

    The guilt really is hard!

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  95. I often print out pieces or chapters to work on. It really does work to see it in a different way. When I feel like it's ready, I print the whole thing out. And still find things that need tweaking or a complete face lift.

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  96. Helen - exactly - I thought my ms was in pretty good shape - and I found dozens of spots to tweak or change. Really interesting. :)

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  97. I heard this advice and tried it. I agree, it works! I did it after my second run through of the story. Then again after like draft #4. I'm glad it did the trick for you too!

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  98. Julie - isn't it great? :)

    I'm so glad I tried it too - I thought it would be a waste of time and resources, but it wasn't.

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  99. Great post Jemi! I am one who prints out their MS after it's completed, that very first rough draft I print out in all it's glory... or not so glorius words and that is the time I make notes with my post-it's, what I will revise when the laptop is opened back up for business.

    Then when I've updated the revisions I reprint and go through it again (the hubs does too for grammar!) Lots of work but totally worth it!!!

    Happy Wednesday!

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  100. Jen - I actually like doing a lot of it on the screen - no evidence :)

    Actually I save each revision round in a separate file - just in case.

    I agree - totally worth it :)

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  101. I like to get it nearly right on the screen before I print off - I do always pick up more when I see it on paper - but I use recycled paper (the back of old documents)

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  102. Michelle - perfect system! I did print on both sides - I only printed about 40 pages at a time, so it was easy to do.

    I know I'll do it again with my next ms!

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  103. I do print it out - once in a blue moon. It's like a treat, because I usually end up having to buy a new ink cartridge by the time it's done. But it's worth it, because there's just something about putting pen to paper that helps me figure things out.

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  104. I print out for final revisions...I sit in a quiet spot and read outloud with a pen. :) It definately makes a difference.

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  105. I print out after the first draft and usually decide then whether I'm going to bother reworking the project or shelving it. I also print out once I think I'm close to done on the rewrites and revisions just to prove to myself I'm nowhere near. After that, I do rely on screen work as most of the major revisions are done. If I make a major change I'll print it out again but that's about it.
    Glad this worked for you.

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  106. Oh, I like Sharon's idea of reading it aloud. That's such a great idea. Why these things don't occur to me until their said outright, I don't know. I guess I'm just a little slow on the uptake :) At least I'm new back in the writing gig, so I've got an excuse :)

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  108. Susan - lol - I had to buy a new cartridge about 40 pages in too :) We rarely print anything in our house now that school's out for the summer.

    It is a like a big treat, isn't it?

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  109. Sharon - you're right - a quiet spot is a must - my family thinks I'm crazy enough as it is. I don't need them to hear me reading my story! :)

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  110. Cassandra - I like your thinking process! Especially when you say you're proving to yourself that you're nowhere near done! Perfect :)

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  111. Rosie - lol :)

    I find the online writing community absolutely golden when it comes to finding out tips and tricks to make me a stronger writer. Everyone is SO helpful!

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  112. Reberto - thanks for dropping by :)

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  113. I find I catch more on paper too! I print it out (on cheaper paper--not the kind I send to agents) after each chapter has gone through crit group once. That's what I edit, in pencil, when it's time to start revising. Another benny? I always have a hard copy of my work. There's something about a pencil and paper when I edit...I love working that way.

    Your comments about being cheap cracked me up. :)

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  114. Dawn - Thanks Dawn :)

    I'll have to check out the different kids of paper. I actually like editing on the screen, so I don't think I'll print out more than once, but I will continue to do it near the end.

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  115. I don't print things unless I'm in the end polishing stages. Otherwise I don't see a point because I'm moving things around so much and rewriting so much it's sort of a waste of paper. No sense polishing a scene that's just going to get deleted :)

    But yeah, I'm always loath to do so because of the colossal waste of paper (and because I don't want to recycle or throw it away--I feel like I should keep it as a hard copy) and the cost, but it does help, especially when line editing is concerned.

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  116. Alexandra - I agree. I do a lot of changing and rewriting on screen. I'm able to do it quite well & it does make a lot more sense.

    But that polishing draft - it's well worth printing it out for me. :)

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  117. It's a case of getting the balance right. I used to print out everything on a daily basis, edit it in the evening and then put my edits onto the computer next day before starting on the next chapter but I've weened myself off that. I think I may have gone a bit too far the other way but, yes, you certainly can see the work in a different way once it's printed out. I'm so with you on the 'changing the margins to save paper' routine though.

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  118. Rosalind - I know - it can get so expensive!

    I do like all the tips everyone has for saving a little bit.

    I think you're so right on balance. It's the same with everything else in life.

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  119. I print it out fairly often, when I think it's done, but pages at a time as I work. Like you, I find it easier to fix problems and even get better ideas.

    I see you so often around the blogosphere, I had to stop by. Nice blog!

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  120. Terry - Thanks so much for dropping by and the nice words :)

    I do like that different physical visual from the print out - works for some reason. :)

    I'm off to check out your place!

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  121. I used to print, but the stack of paper would get several feet high.

    Now I just print a few pages at a time if I get writer's block and have to take a thought on the road.

    But you are right, you do look at the sentence structure and other problems differently when holding a piece of paper.

    Wally

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  122. Wally - I don't print a lot either - cost and environmental guilt :)

    But I will do it again when get near the end. I like the idea of using it to unblock that block too. Good stuff.

    Thanks for dropping by :)

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  123. Printing it out is definitely a must. While it would be nice to do it ALL THE TIME that would mean I was revising ALL THE TIME and I don't wanna do that. Oh, and I'm also cheap. That said, I print it out when the first draft is completed. Only when all the story is out there can I truly start begin the hack and slash in earnest (and can hopefully get rid of all those redundancies). :)

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  124. Kimberly - I'm with you on the cheapness! :)

    There are many of you who print out that first draft. I might have to try it the next story - although I can slash pretty well on the screen. :)

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  125. First of all--124 comments has to be a record (this makes 125).

    Second, totally the way to go! Printing is so much easier on the eyes and a better way to catch mistakes. Glad you beat your frugal genes! And, I'm glad you're far enough along to print it all!

    Michele
    SouthernCityMysteries

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  126. Thanks Michele - it always amazes me how many people stop by to visit - there are so many nice people in this corner of the bloggyverse :)

    I love your description - my frugal genes did wince a bit (a lot!) but they'll just have to live with it 'cause it's gonna happen again!)

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  127. Haha I was just like you- screen, paper, same story but turns out I was wrong. Revising is so much easier when you can see the words on the paper :)

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  128. Lua - I know! Amazing isn't it. I still won't do it a lot - way too hard on the genes and the conscience - but it works. :)

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  129. Absolutely have to print my works. I know it's a lot of paper, but I just see it differently. I tend to print articles too, because document folders just aren't the same as labeled binders. Hopefully your Scottish genes aren't cringing from my English ones. We were at war alot!

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  130. I print mine out as well, sometimes two or three times if I have major revisions. I also swear by the reading aloud, at least once from the screen and one more time from that printed copy. It works.

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  131. Wise people, you guys. I shall remember to do it next time I print, especially since I'm my own editor and I know this is *very* dangerous!

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  132. I haven't printed my full manuscript yet, just bits and pieces. However, I absolutely think it's necessary to catch mistakes. There's just something about holding several pages in your hand that allows you to see them so much more clearly than if you're looking page by page on the screen.

    By the way, I found your blog through Cindy R. Wilson's, and am so glad I did! :)

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  133. Jemi, are you Nathan Bransford? 132 comments - wow!

    Isn't it amazing what happens when you read the printed version?!
    I was a sceptic, until I tried it.

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  134. I get my best editing done with the printed version. I'm pretty cheap myself, so the effort pays off for me in the long run.

    I only print it out on two occasions; when I'm really frustrated with a portion and can't figure out what wrong, or when I've completed ANOTHER entire revision and need to see the work in its entirety.

    When I beta read, I find myself printing out the novel also. Something about the feel of the paper, the weight of the sharpened pencil (not pen), just organize my thoughts differently.

    ......dhole

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  135. Lynn - lol - but we're on the same side now!! :)

    I think it comes down to learning styles. Some people are going to find it easier on paper than others. For me the screen works most of the time, but I do like that print for polishing!

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  136. Pat - I'll have to try reading out loud from the printed version - I never thought of that! Great tip - thanks :)

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  137. Mari - exactly! I know what the story should say, so that's exactly what my brain sees! Just the act of printing helped :)

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  138. Beth - welcome! Cindy is such a sweetie :)

    It amazes me how many people do this whole printing thing. I think everyone should give it a try :)

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  139. Elaine - lol :) You're a sweetie!

    I was skeptical too - until I tried it. Don't know why it all works, but I'll do it again!

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  140. Donna - I think it would be a great thing to try for those blocked times. I hadn't thought of that. Just seeing things in a different media works. Thanks for the tip!

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  141. Absolutely! I printed out my first draft and it is amazing how much more stuff I saw on paper. Maybe it's the computer glare :) I know exactly how you feel though... I'd rather save money and paper, but this does help. So I just try to print out one copy and recycle it. Glad it worked for you!

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  142. Thanks Julie! :)

    I do think it helped, but I'm glad I did it nearer the end of the process rather than the beginning - that part works well on the screen for some reason.

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  143. I print at the end, when I finish the first draft, and then maybe again later when I think it's done. I also change the font--helps make it easier to spot mistakes.

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  144. Beth - what a great tip! I'm definitely going to try the font change. I bet that would change it enough for the brain to see it as a different piece of work. Thanks :)

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  145. I don't think I could edit straight on screen - there's something just so wonderful about reading my words on paper. And that's coming from me, the ebook lover! I keep thinking I might convert to pdf and load to my iPhone, but then it would drive me nuts because I couldn't actually mark up. I might do that once I get to the final draft, though :)

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  146. Belle - That makes me laugh because I know how you love your ebooks!

    I actually like editing on screen for the most part, but there was an added bonus to doing it on paper :)

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