I was lucky enough to receive an advance copy of Editor-Proof Your Writing: 21 Steps to the Clear Prose Publishers and Agents Crave by award winning writer and editor, Don McNair. In a stroke of serendipity, the book arrived just as I was getting ready to do the final edits on my summer novel release.
As I read this book, it struck me as basic advice. I’m a teacher and a writer, and I didn’t expect to find anything new for myself in the book. Don McNair surprised me.
With his cut-to-the-core style, and his structured steps, he makes editing clear and easy. No more wandering through your manuscript wondering if something should stay or go. With Don McNair’s steps to fog-free writing, in the first pass you’ll know what to cut and what to keep. Editor-Proof Your Writing makes the whole process simple. Using his method, I reduced my editing time by half.
Also, I keep my review copies of books in presentable condition, because I often pass them along to other readers. Not this one. You’ll have to get your own copy! My copy is bursting with highlighting marks, sticky notes galore, and pencil marks where I did the exercises he suggests right in the book. I know, it sounds crazy, right? But this expert author has a way of making you want to dive right into the editing, right on the pages. I’ll be referring back to this book every time I edit.
Editor-Proof Your Writing includes:
- Straightforward advice about keeping readers interested
- A section with 21 easy to follow steps for editing
- Writing examples from before, during, and after editing
- How to write a query and synopsis
- Invaluable guidance you would expect from a mentor
Don, if you’re reading this review, I hope you don’t find too many errors in my writing! Thanks for the fabulous tips and editing system.
Readers, come back April 12 when Don McNair has a guest post on the TeacherWriter blog. He’ll be giving one commenter a book from his backlist.
Blurb from editor-proof your writing
Most editing manuals are like geography books. They give great information, but don’t show how to get from place to place. Editor-Proof Your Writing: 21 Steps to the Clear Prose Publishers and Agents Crave is a GPS that leads you through the writing jungle to solve your specific writing problems.
Most editing manuals are like dictionaries from which you’re asked to select words to write the Great American Novel. This book shows what words to use and what words NOT to use.
Most editing manuals are loaded with mind-numbing theory. This one presents knowledge a step at a time and asks you to apply what you learned—a step at a time—to your manuscript’s first chapter. Along the way you’ll also edit a nine-chapter melodrama and check your editing against the author’s. When you finish, you’ll have an editor-proofed first chapter and will be ready to edit the rest of your book.
This system was proven to work in three years of weekend and online classes, titled Editor-Proof That Chapter and Twenty-One Steps to Fog-Free Writing. They are parts One and Two of this book. Part Three discusses finding and working with critique partners, professional editors, publishers, and agents. The students loved the concept!
This book is perfect for use in classrooms. The information is presented in bite-sized lessons which can be assigned daily. See what students say about their classroom experiences on the back page.
Don McNair spent his working life editing magazines (eleven years), producing public relations materials for an international PR company (six years), and heading his own marketing communications firm, McNair Marketing Communications (twenty-one years). His creativity has won him three Golden Trumpets for best industrial relations programs from the Publicity Club of Chicago, a certificate of merit award for a quarterly magazine he wrote and produced, and the Public Relations Society of America’s Silver Anvil. The latter is comparable to the Emmy and Oscar in other industries.
McNair has written and placed hundreds of trade magazine articles and four published non-fiction how-to books. He considers his latest, Editor-Proof Your Writing: 21 Steps to the Clear Prose Publishers and Agents Crave, (published April 1, 2013 by Quill Driver Books) to be the cap of his forty-year writing and editing career. It’s an easy-to-use editing manual that helps writers edit, step by step, their first chapter, then use the knowledge gained to edit the rest of their work.
McNair has also written six novels; two young adults (Attack of the Killer Prom Dresses and The Long Hunter), three romantic suspenses (Mystery on Firefly Knob, Mystery at Magnolia Mansion, and co-authored Waiting for Backup!), and a romantic comedy (BJ, Milo, and the Hairdo from Heck). All are published internationally, and are available at his website, http://DonMcNair.com .
McNair, a member of Romance Writers of America, Mystery Writers of America, and the Editorial Freelancers Association, now concentrates on editing novels for others. He teaches two online editing classes.
Don McNair is on a virtual book tour this month, and he’ll be giving away a copy of one of his books from his backlist. He’ll be doing a guest post here at the TeacherWriter blog on April 12, 2013. In the meantime, you can follow the other stops on his blog by clicking on the tour banner below.