Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Top Tips: Editing

Today we had an alternative First Story session in which Kate held one-to-one tutorials with the students, looking at possible competition entries, their A-Level portfolios, and submissions for the anthology. We held a similar class towards the end of last term, when our First Story group took the opportunity to get as many writers as possible in our class so that our young writers could benefit from the advice of many different voices of experience.

With Kate, Azfa, Alan Buckley and Mr Moyser together, we looked over the students writing in order to offer feedback and support with editing; and I thought this might be a great opportunity to gather some top tips, so here they are:
  • Kate Clanchy - give yourself a numerical target. Tell yourself you will remove 50 words from a piece of short writing. The ones that you cut will probably have been unnecessary.
  • Tim Pears - get other people to read over your work. They'll see what you can no longer see from what does or doesnt make sense to typos. Very useful!
  • Mr Moyser  - don't be afraid to cut. Get rid of any excess words. Get rid of anything like "very" - these words are unnecessary!
  • Julie Bolitho-Lee - read it out loud., listening back to the words and rhythm.
  • Alan Buckley - when writing poetry, come in strongly and step off lightly. Really focus on the first and last sentences of your piece.
  • Azfa Ali - make sure you don't edit out your own voice. Sometimes, it can be tempting to cut out things that make you feel uncomfortable to write about or share, but include these things! They make you who you are!
If anyone out there has any further tips to add, please tweet me @litllibrarian!

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