Revisions Process–Microrevisions

This is the fifth post in a series about my revisions process.  I received a revise and resubmit letter from an agent at the end of May.  My first post was about how I made my schedule, my second post was about reading my old manuscript, my third post was about mid-level revisions, and my fourth post was about sending this manuscript back to beta readers.  This post will be about microrevisions.

Microrevisions are the revisions I am working on now that I have received my responses from my beta readers.  The process is mostly focused on sentence and paragraph-level prose tweaking.  However, this time my microrevisions have blended a little into my mid-level revisions because I’m doing them after receiving feedback from beta readers.  Since the feedback was mostly positive, it doesn’t require a second level of mid-level revisions (like the grueling mid-level revisions I had to do after the first time I sent this to beta readers).  But the responses have also sparked ideas, like altering a few scenes and changing a few aspects of one character, that are more along the lines of mid-level revisions.

I start by absolutely maximizing my text size on full-screen view in Scrivener so that I am forced to read slowly and read each word as it is presented.  If I go back and make paragraph-level changes (such as moving paragraphs around or deleting sections), I’ll sometimes jump into the Scrivener’s regular editing mode, but I always make sure to go back to the large text view so that I’m focused on only a couple of sentences at a time.

I do microrevisions in two passes.  The first is to do sentence- and paragraph-level changes to the flow of the language in the story.  After I’ve eliminated redundancies and tweaked the prose as clear as I can get it, I do a second read-through to fix inadvertent problems and typographical errors that my first pass created.  If the second read-through results in major changes, I do a third read-through.  Third is as far as I’ve had to go, but I would do as many as necessary until I was satisfied with the prose.

Once these microrevisions are done, I intend to do a “final read” in Scrivener before I format my manuscript for submission.

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