Editors can tell within a page or two how much editing would be required to make a manuscript publishable; if it would take a lot of work in every sentence, the labor cost alone would disqualify it.
An editor can tell immediately whether a writer understands what it means to grab a reader by the throat and not let go.
- Have too many characters been introduced too quickly?
- Does the writer understand point of view?
- Is the setting and tone interesting?
- Do we have a sense of where the story is headed, or is there too much throat clearing? (See below for an explanation.)
- Is the story subtle and evocative, or is it on-the-nose?
Yes, a professional editor can determine all this with a quick read of the first two to three pages.
If you find yourself saying, “But they didn’t even get to the good stuff,” then you need to put the good stuff earlier in your manuscript.
So today, I want to zero in on tight writing and self-editing.
Read the full article: http://www.jerryjenkins.com/self-editing/?inf_contact_key=955c59775a792f7f2eb34ff3863a7d44d32aec0f9da787908200db892819a21c