Thursday, June 6, 2013

Manuscript Notes

I just pulled out a rough draft the other day to begin edits. While reading through the first few chapters I noticed notes I had made to myself about things I wanted to change in a future drafts. I was reminded of how I've changed making notes to myself within a manuscript over time. Mainly what popped into mind was another manuscript I was polishing a couple of months ago. I noticed a note to myself at the end of the manuscript.

I was shocked I had missed it so many times through the manuscript. Yet, at the same time I'm not to surprised. When I first began making notes to myself in drafts it was simple. I would put parenthesis around the note and the note itself would be in italics. Not the best method and I quickly found out during the editing process that I tended to miss them occasionally. I needed to devise a new method.

Then I ran across another blog post, one where the writer mentioned how she notates within her manuscripts. I can't remember now exactly what it was, but she would insert a symbol before the note. This got me thinking I wanted to have a way to easily find my notes, but I also didn't want to have to go through the process of inserting a symbol while the juices were flowing. So, I landed on adding an astrik before and after the note. Quick and easy!

This is the type of note I found in this most recent manuscript. I felt a wave of relief as I was going through it, realizing that all I have to do is a search for an * to find all of my notes. No more running across a note in a final draft. If the astrik doesn't come up in a search of the entire document, then I will know all of my notes have been addressed.

How do you make notes to yourself during the drafting and editing stages? 

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