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BREAKING DOWN AN EDITORIAL LETTER before revisions [CC]

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A lot of you had questions about when I received my editorial letter if I can go over how I break it down before revising Hey there! Welcome back to my channel

My name is Katlyn Duncan and I am an author of books for adults and young adults I post here on YouTube twice a week with writing vlogs, writing tips, and all the bookish things, so if you're interested in that, be sure to hit that subscribe button so you don't miss out So today is a little bit of an informal video I do not have a writing vlog this week, but I should next week because I did receive my edits for my next novel with HQ Digital Now I did get a note from my editor that the book was pretty clean as is, which is a great note to hear, that basically means that the book is–plot-wise–it's really strong so that there's not a lot of big picture edits that I have to do

There's a lot of little things, and I will go over that in my next writing vlog so stay tuned for that But I did want to still answer questions about how to break down an editorial letter So if you have no idea what an editorial letter is, it's basically a letter that you would get from an editor whether it's a publishing company or a freelance editor when you're going over developmental edits And this focuses more on big picture things, so that's plot, character, basically the things that you would have to deal with to get the book in as good as a condition as possible before you were going to copyedits, which would be more of the nitty-gritty grammar, sentence structure, things like that So previously, I did do how I revise with an editorial letter, but a part of that was how I break down the letter which a bunch of you had questions on, so I'm going to home in a little bit on that and just talk about how I break down editorial letter once I receive it

I'm going to go over the actual editorial letter that I received for Wrapped Up for Christmas which was my Christmas novel just published in 2019, and sort of speed through how I would take, I believe it was three pages, and I took it down to one Why I break down my letter to one to two pages at the most is because during the revision process I really like to focus on fixing the book, so having to read a letter over and over again every time I have a question about something, it takes away a lot of time for me I like to make a bullet point of the actual note and then underneath it something that's related to it so say it has to do with the scene, any example that she may put sort of explaining her rationale or some ideas to try to bring that scene to life I will leave there and try to get this letter as small as possible So what I have next is a fast- forwarded way of me breaking down my letter for Wrapped Up for Christmas, and I'll explain further what I did

[Music] So during the breakdown of the letter, you saw that I went through the letter once I picked out all of the things that I wanted to break down to and it was still two pages I continued to break it down over and over again until I just got that one page Then what I do at this point in the process is I will take all of the notes and I will sort them in terms of big picture all the way down to scene level things So big picture examples would be for Angie–the main character in my book–my editor wanted me to draw out her emotions a little bit I find when I write my first drafts I really just try to get the plot of the story down, and my revisions tend to focus a lot on emotion and setting

So I put all of those at the top because those are the things that I want to focus on when I go through my revision I want to focus on them throughout most of the book I am not the type of person who can just do a read of the whole manuscript based on character, or just plot, or just setting I need to do it linearly, so I focus on all of these things at once, which is why I think this process of breaking it down into bullet points helps me, because I'm able to quickly look back and forth to see what I need to be doing So then I will go down, and do all the big-picture stuff at the top and then move down to scene level

So for example in this book there was a note about the best friend of my main character seeming a little too blunt at first, and I pinpointed the scene exactly where my editor wanted so I was able to–whenever I got to that scene–I was able to quickly go through that note and then cross it off on my list So as I go through my book I keep checking in with this one to two page breakdown, so I'm able to make sure I hit all of these points that my editor had pointed out, along with my own revising So if I see something is spelt wrong or maybe the sentence reads weird, I will still do that along the process, but I love having sort of like a split screen right there between my story and my list just to make sure I hit all of the points So that's a quick overview on how I break down my editorial letter It's what I always find very helpful from my editing process

So if you have any questions about the process, or want to pick my brain a little bit, I am happy to discuss it in the comments below If you enjoyed this video do give it a like, hit that subscribe button, and a little notification bell next to it so you know the next time I post And I'll see you soon!

Source: Youtube

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