Swoon Author Kiara London: Things Nobody Tells You About Editing

Confession time: I didn't think writers had 100% responsibility for editing their books.

leslie parks and rec gif naive

I was truly a romantic. Common sense didn't dawn on me until the manuscript was back in my lap with a laundry list of things to work out. You see, I thought you just turned in a manuscript and poof it would find a way to be perfect.

But no.

No, no, no, no, no.

So maybe this list won't pertain to any of you, but for the beautiful, naïve, sophisticated newborn baby authors out there let me give you the lowdown.

1. Your editor is your guide, not your fairy godmother. Things don't happen unless you make them happen.

2. Editing is all about feedback. You're going to get constructive criticism—and that doesn't mean they don't like your book! You get that criticism so that you can improve and make your book the best version of itself that it can be.

3. There's lots of different kinds of editors. Development and copyright editors are usually not the same people—and that's good! More eyes to catch things.

4. It's not just about the big picture. After the storyline is polished, everything from a sentence to a comma is debated.

5. Sometimes you have to put your favorite scenes or dialogue on the chopping block because it just doesn't fit.

6. You're going to read your own book more times than you can count on your fingers before it's through, and sometimes you're going to question the quality of your work.

7. This, my friend, is not a weekend project. Not if you want it done right. It's a couple month project. So get comfy.

8. You don't have to agree with every single suggestion.

9. You'll start to nitpick the books you read for pleasure. You've finally finished editing and you're going to treat yourself to a new book, you say? Well...you've spent so much time in editing mode that you'll actively start looking for mistakes.

10. It's a necessary evil. I personally don't like editing, but the result is worth it because in the end it's still 100% mine. And it wouldn't be as rewarding if it had just poofed to perfection.

I was so silly before reality set in. So tell me, are you an editing lover or an editing hater? Any magical thoughts about how the editing process happens?

Until next week,


About the author - Kiara London

Sᴡᴏᴏɴ Aᴜᴛʜᴏʀ. Fᴏᴏᴅɪᴇ. Tᴜᴍʙʟʀ Aᴅᴅɪᴄᴛ. Sᴇʟғ-Pʀᴏᴄʟᴀɪᴍᴇᴅ Cᴏᴍᴇᴅɪᴀɴ. Hᴏᴘᴇʟᴇss. Tᴏɴᴇ Dᴇᴀғ. Sᴜʀᴠɪᴠᴏʀ ᴏғ 2012.

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8 comments on "Swoon Author Kiara London: Things Nobody Tells You About Editing"

Cynthia Philp on Nov. 8, 2016, 11:25 a.m. said:

Cynthia Philp

An interesting perspective!! I just finished my first novel (Seeing Emily) and the 'unofficial editing' is quite the process... Thanks for sharing your experiences on the bigger picture!

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Kate Wyre on Oct. 18, 2016, 1:48 p.m. said:

Kate Wyre

I've been having a love affair with book editing for years. This post was awesome to read-very useful to writers!

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Prags on Oct. 18, 2016, 4:42 a.m. said:


I'm a sort of editing lover! My best friend is writing this novel and I'm editing it. Only thing is, I'm not the guide, as you say, but the fairy godmother. I mean, she writes and sends it off to me and it's my job to look for and correct any plotholes and to fix the grammar and chop off what's not required. Yes, so I do everything. And I love it! <3

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Luvelle Raevan on Oct. 15, 2016, 1:02 a.m. said:

Luvelle Raevan

Kiara, upon reading your description of the editing process I'm an editing lover! Very encouraging :)

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Katy Upperman on Oct. 14, 2016, 1:56 p.m. said:

Katy Upperman

Editing lover here! I was just telling a non-writer friend the other day that I was working on proofing my first pass pages and she was like, "Doesn't somebody do that for you?" Well, yes, other people are helping me read and edit and perfect but at the end of the day, it's MY name on that cover. I'm happy to be very involved in every single step. (Also, can't wait to read Kiss Cam!)

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SAMiAMiz on Oct. 14, 2016, 1:36 p.m. said:


ive actually learned to appreciate the writing process. it just helps me find mistakes i missed, and usually the rewrite is totally worth it.

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Kristy Brown on Oct. 14, 2016, 12:18 p.m. said:

Kristy Brown

Great, honest post. ;)

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Cindy Anstey on Oct. 14, 2016, 10:40 a.m. said:

Cindy Anstey

When I first started writing, I thought that I would hate editing. I was wrong, oh so wrong. How can you hate a process that polishes your creation to a bright shine? Congrats on KISS CAM. Just four more days!!!

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