My Writing Journey

Editing my novel – week one


This is my first proper vlog. A vlog with talky bits. A vlog with my face. Where I document how I’m undertaking a structural edit of my novel.

I don’t know what I feel most daunted about. The edit (it’s a major edit) or putting my face up there onto YouTube.

It’s incredibly exposing opening myself up like this. It is also incredibly scary. Am I risking criticism, trolls, comments I can’t handle? Possibly.

Undertaking an edit like this though is something I’ve never attempted before. And when I’m scared, with little confidence, I’m prone to procrastination. I’ll put all my energies into other projects and put this one off. Because it seems so big. Massive. Like I could never achieve it.

The only way I could see myself going through with it, is by filming it. That is my deadline.

It is one thing writing 70,000 words. It’s quite another to craft those words, those sentences, paragraphs and chapters into something cohesive. Something that’ll entertain, keep the reader gripped, and tells the story that you’ve had in your head for so long to the best of your ability.

Right now I’m at a pretty low point with my writing. And exposing myself like this could go one of two ways. But, I’m trying to convince the 25% of myself that wants to give up that writing is worth pursuing. So this is almost do or die. Pushing myself to do something that frightens me.

Please be kind…


For Pinterest:

how I'm editing my novel

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  • Reply Catherine Binnie

    I absolutely loved this! I’m currently staring at a load of re-write post it notes wondering what to do with them – so your vlog was perfectly timed and full of inspiration. Thanks for sharing, I can imagine it’s a very daunting thing to do, but you’ve done it beautifully.

    10th November 2016 at 9:36 am
    • Reply Helen Redfern

      Thanks, Catherine. Post-its are a really great tool but can also feel daunting. I know I’m a bit daunted about my middle section (of my book!) Good luck!

      10th November 2016 at 12:12 pm
  • Reply Candy Pop

    What a beautiful vlog, I found it really calming. Have a lovely day. x

    10th November 2016 at 10:19 am
    • Reply Helen Redfern

      Aw, thank you. I’m hoping it stays calm in future ones!

      10th November 2016 at 12:11 pm
  • Reply Sarah Painter

    Fantastic vlog, Helen; I’m so impressed! Well done, too, for your excellent editing progress. I’m rewriting at the moment (which involves restructuring) so I absolutely feel your pain. We can do it! *waves pom poms* x

    10th November 2016 at 11:58 am
    • Reply Helen Redfern

      Yes, we certainly can! Thanks, Sarah xx

      10th November 2016 at 12:11 pm
  • Reply Sladjana

    Hello! This is so lovely,natural and I wish you all the best. First step is done so go on,enjoy your work☺

    10th November 2016 at 12:31 pm
  • Reply Zoe

    Brilliant vlog, it was great to see you and hear your voice. I’m currently in third rewrite/edit of my book so I’m really there with you. I use little cards (like for when you’re giving a speech) rather than post-it notes as I couldn’t handle the sticky bits. And colour coding, I love having different plot points in different colours!
    I’m really looking forward to your next vlog, it’s great knowing I’m not doing this alone xx

    10th November 2016 at 12:44 pm
  • Reply Ria

    Good Luck, Helen! I saw the word ‘recipes’ on the post-it notes, so imagining it to be a story with lots of mouthwatering food items 😀 Your video also gave me an idea of how to start writing the story in my head. Thanks!

    10th November 2016 at 5:12 pm
  • Reply Deb

    I love your vlog. The mix of the inside/outside/distractions/method really worked well. It felt ‘real’. Your eye for a picture evidently works on a video too!

    11th November 2016 at 8:10 am
  • Reply Lynn

    Helen, that was lovely!! Keep it up!

    11th November 2016 at 3:51 pm
  • Reply Abi Willford

    Hi Helen!

    I loved this video – I’m currently undertaking a major edit of a YA novel for one of my clients and it’s fascinating to see how other people approach the process. Hope you keep up the videos, I’ll be watching with interest! x

    22nd November 2016 at 7:50 pm
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