Learn To Edit Without Sweat and Regret

Learn To Edit Without Sweat and Regret

After we click the cursor on our computer to release our God-given thoughts, we dream of publication … (Cue the heavenly visions of blue skies and puffy, white clouds.) Then, sometimes, horror strikes. The dreaded errors glare at us with raised eyebrows and pronounce their judgments: the red-hot heat flush, the sweat of panic, the pang of nausea that plunges our heart to the depths of embarrassment, and the powerlessness of missed opportunity. We go from a high-on-the-mountain finish to a low-in-the-valley standstill. 

Why edit your writing with sweat and regret? Transform your editing stress to an editing mindset. Here are five habits to help you create an editing mindset:

Allow ample time. 

There may be times we write to a tight deadline with all our t’s crossed and i’s dotted. However, it is rare to craft quality work when rushed. Good, consistent writing comes from good, consistent habits. Allow ample time for the entire writing process, especially while learning.

As a writer, do you ever find yourself stressed by the process of editing your work? Transform your editing stress into an editing mindset that will help you feel confident, and learn to edit without sweat and regret. Here are five habits to help you create an editing mindset!

Get quiet.

A quiet mind can be tough to hold on to when the world’s demands needle us. Do you sense the peace of God’s presence? Invite Him into your writing and whisper a word of prayer over your work. Now, edit.

Minimize multitasking.

Multitasking with our writing invites errors, putting us on edge. Don’t do it. (Please.)

Be relaxed but not too relaxed.

We planned ahead, way in advance. We did a victory dance, but there it is — the error. Caught off guard, we panic, convinced that nothing in our writing is clear. Instead, keep the mindset that editing takes time. Remain steadfast and visit your writing often until the deadline. Between writing activities, relax your mind, not your discipline or attention to detail.

Have someone review your writing before you click “Send.”

Sometimes, we can’t see an error. We read and reread our writing countless times. Yet our vision blurs and blinds us. We need the fresh eyes of another reader to catch mistakes. Ask a friend or your critique group to read over your writing. This habit takes planning and brings us back to the first habit: Allow ample time.

The writing life is a mindset, and the editing process is no exception. Implementing these habits will help you feel confident and learn to edit without sweat and regret. 

Blessings,

Joanne Almeter

Which one of these habits will you focus on first? Which one helps you the most? 

Share

Joanne Almeter is a Bible teacher, leader, writer and speaker who writes Bible studies and devotions for women. Currently, she is a COMPEL Training volunteer and member. At her church, she serves as a Ministry Deacon of Small Groups, mentor and women’s Bible study teacher. Joanne created the newsletter column “Food for Thought: Daily Manna and the Bread of Life,” bridging Old and New Testament Scriptures. She is also a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators and writes picture books, chapter books and nonfiction for children. Her greatest desire is for people to have a thriving relationship with Jesus built on the hope and promise of who He is. When she is not active in ministry or writing, you can find her capturing the delicate beauty of nature in macro photography, learning a new shortcut through town, and laughing at the amusing and unexpected events of life with her husband.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Comments

  1. I definitely need to work on sending my writing for a review before I click send, thanks.

    • Joanne Almeter: January 28, 2022 at 2:39 pm

      Hi Oris! I am with you. I have grown to enjoy the review process. It is a growing experience worth having! Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Blessings on you and your writing.

  2. Charla Matthews: January 26, 2022 at 2:01 pm

    Amen to this, “Between writing activities, relax your mind, not your discipline or attention to detail.”

    Excellent guidance, Joanne!

    • Joanne Almeter: January 28, 2022 at 2:43 pm

      Hi Charla,
      I am so glad this post helped you today! That tip was hard-won, but it was worth it. Thank you for sharing your thoughts today. Blessings on you and your writing!

  3. Thanks for this, Joanne. I’m guilty of multitasking and need to focus more on the task at hand.

    • Joanne Almeter: January 28, 2022 at 2:46 pm

      Hi Regina,
      You are so welcome. You are not alone. We all seem to be learning how to undo the multitasking habit. You’ve got this now, Regina. You can do it! Thank you for sharing your thoughts today. Blessings on your writing ministry!

  4. Regina McIntosh: January 26, 2022 at 6:08 am

    Wonderful suggestions. I need to edit more and will remember this. God bless you!

    • Joanne Almeter: January 28, 2022 at 2:49 pm

      Hi Regina,
      Thank you for your kind words. I feel blessed to know this post was helpful to you. You can do this! Blessings on you and your writing.

  5. I love your tips for the editing mindset, Joanne!