Line Editing, Up Close and Personal

I spent a large portion of the month of April revising The Duke and the Pirate Queen; some of the revisions responded to my editor’s comments, some responded to a workshop critique, and some came from my fevered brain.

I thought it would be interesting to share some of the line edits I made in the manuscript.

Original version:
Imena was far more devious than he’d predicted.
Revised version:
Imena was delightfully devious.

Original version:
…he could hear feet above, pattering on the main deck, distant shouting, the loud creaking of wood and rope and the snap of sail.
Revised version:
…he could hear feet pattering on the main deck above, distant shouting, the loud creaking of wood, the heavy hum of rope, and the snap of sail.

Original version:
Maxime stopped him from closing the door with a hand on Chetri’s shoulder.
Revised version:
Maxime grasped Chetri’s shoulder to stop him from closing the door.

Original version:
Gently, he dislodged Maxime’s hand from his shoulder and stepped back.
Revised version:
Gently, he dislodged Maxime’s hand and stepped back.

Original version:
She hadn’t thought it was like her to brood, but in the cold dark hours of the morning, her past decisions surged and receded in her mind like surf.
Revised version:
In the cold dark hours of the morning, her past decisions surged and receded in her mind like surf.

Original version:
He turned his head and kissed in the vicinity of her ankle, dragging his mouth along her shin and nibbling with the edges of his teeth…He curled one hand around her calf and slowly slid upwards, seeking the top of her stocking.
Revised version:
He turned his head and kissed in the vicinity of her ankle, dragging his mouth upwards and nibbling with the edges of his teeth…He curled one hand around her calf and slowly slid up to her thigh, seeking the top of her stocking.

Original version:
Sunlight only occasionally filtered down through the trees, but when it did, the heat was trapped, and she felt it more powerfully with her clothing on. Sweat had begun to trickle down her back, mingling with tiny fragments of bark from her tree-climbing and the slightly sticky residue from The Knife’s insect repelling balm.
Revised version:
Sunlight filtered down through the trees where the heat was trapped. She felt it more powerfully with her clothing on. Sweat had begun to trickle down her back, mingling with tiny fragments of bark from her tree-climbing and the sticky residue from The Knife’s insect repelling balm.

Published by Victoria Janssen

Victoria Janssen’s writing showcases her voracious lifelong love of books. She reads over 120 new books each year, especially historical romance, fantasy, and space opera, and incorporates these genres into her erotic fiction. Her first erotic novel, The Duchess, Her Maid, The Groom and Their Lover (Harlequin Spice, December 2008), was translated into French and German. Her second Spice novel, The Moonlight Mistress (December 2009), was translated into Italian and nominated for a RT Reviews Reviewers’ Choice Award. Her third novel is The Duke & The Pirate Queen (December 2010). She has also published erotic short stories as Elspeth Potter. When not writing, Victoria conducts research in libraries and graveyards, lectures about writing and selling erotica, and speaks at literary conventions on topics such as paranormal romance, urban fantasy, erotic science fiction/fantasy, and the empowerment of women through unconventional means. Her daily writing blog features professional writing and marketing tips, genre discussion, book reviews, and author interviews. She also guest blogs for Heroes & Heartbreakers and The Criminal Element. She lives in Philadelphia.

2 replies on “Line Editing, Up Close and Personal”

Comments are closed.