Writing the novel. It is the most sensible way to begin, for me.
I write my novels by hand, finding that typing out a fresh story gives me mega mind block, so step two is... transcribing. It's helpful as a preliminary, spell-check edit, although I leave it mostly to it's bareness at this stage.
The first edit. I'll print my entire manuscript off and read through it with a journal at my side. The printed edition will gradually get covered in notes, edits and lines to signal cut all the words. In the journal I'll write out ideas, character backgrounds, world info and extra scenes that don't quite fit in the margins of my edit. I'll also crack jokes for my future transcribing self. And doodle immeasurably in the margins.
Then I transcribe these hand edits back onto the computer.
I give it around three months break and come back refreshed to, laughingly, call this the read through, imagining it'll be quicker than the first edit and won't really involve the intensity of editing that round 1 did. I'm always wrong and realise this within three pages. This becomes, then, edit number two and is just as intense, re: cutting, rewriting and devising as the first, although the journal is nowhere to be seen.
More transcribing. I fancify the format of the novel- double spacing, font size, all of it- here. Recently, this stage involved adding explitives into my novel.
It quickly because evident it wasn't even possibly MG anymore.
This is the next read through. It, too, becomes an edit.
In my most recent edit I went through about five pens in this stage.With my current WIP I'm almost at this stage.
Kasta, I have to say, loves my work. She spends so much time just sleeping at my side, on my lap, with her face on the corner of my manuscript. I even made an #editingwithkasta tag.Step 6.
I get to the stage, by this point, of being really, really, really ready with the novel. I'm super proud of it, and myself, and I'm glad since it's had a couple hundred hours poured into it by this stage. I get in contact with critique partners and friends and share my story.
Editing is arguably my favourite part of the writing process. I get frustrated and angry with my novel, sure, but I get to spend a different level and type of time with the characters, and working so endlessly to ensure my manuscript is how I envisioned it in the best possible way. I get a really different feel for the characters, during this one, and they become that bit realer. That bit creepier. Really, here, they become more than characters in my head. They become *sings* friends.
So that's my writing/editing/process of terror. And at this point, I'm off to work on the last point of stage number 5.