Editing Rant: Down vs. Out

One common piece of advice I have given often is:
Get the WORDS on the PAGE. You can’t edit it if it hasn’t been written.
I’ve even passed on advice given by other authors along this line.
That being said, DON’T PUBLISH the first draft.
The first draft is just that – one pass. Nothing polished.
A writer needs to work things over, tumble the stone until rough edges are knocked off and the colors shine through.
One of my author friends reports that a current piece of advice is “better to push out a poorly edited book than have nothing at all.”
Really, WHAT?
The concept is to have something out there for people to read, to stumble across. Content, content, content. That is how people find you and get to know you.
Except the content sucks. People associate you with the suckage. Not.a.good.thing.
Also, this not only harms your reputation as a creative, it harms the greater community as people start expecting badly written books. Things out there just to make money.
Publishing just to publish is BAD advice.
To pull the two pieces of advice together.


Get things down on paper or the computer screen. You can’t fix things that haven’t been written. It’s okay to suck on the first try – you will create bad stuff. Everyone does. The object is to create something to fix.

Do NOT push out that initial writing. It’s got to be worked and edited.

Down but not out.

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