On Writing, Editing, Editing Some More and the Finished Pdf File...
These days, a smile forms when I consider the future of publishing work; from articles to poetry from the past to the present, from then to now; thanks to the independent-stand-alone PDF-file manuscript. When you're able to master the self-editing process of your writing, your finished work presented in this layout quickly becomes one of your biggest achievements.
A good work of writing -stands alone- and looks outstanding when finished in the 'PDF' file, with all the bells and whistles embedded. 'PDF' is a widely recognized format for writers who aim to be taken seriously. For a writer who's just beginning as well as established authors, it really is what you want to present as your finished piece, having used, perhaps, a 'Microsoft Word' type software to begin with. When I look at my work transferred to pdf, it's as plain as day and the closest thing to a style of book - without leafing through the pages in your hand.
I've gladly been writing many a creative year; always in longhand, to include a few books of poetry, published in anthologies and magazines, articles and the odd story every now and then. While most of what I've ever published has taken the form of the 'article'. For me, drafting an article is the best way to convey the methodical approach to well-structured paragraphs in order to present what I am writing clearly and precisely. My finished articles seem to have been the most popular of all that I've written. I find the style of presenting an article appealing and straightforward; to write, edit and get the message across to the reader fast and effectively has to be the 'article's' single biggest quality and my preferred medium when I sit down to work.
Truthfully, I really enjoy the ebb and flow of the entire writing process. What starts out as a few words on a page, soon develops into a serious stream of worthwhile reading material... once properly edited of course. The writing-buzz occurs when your pages take on a life of their own and start turning out something truly worthwhile, is a massive achievement. A good idea can quickly escalate like a fire within to warm you up and there's no better sensation. All good writers know and crave this feeling, daily, accompanied by the intensity felt as you work step-by-step through you're words, sentences, and paragraphs.
The solitary sense of achievement you feel when your 'MS' begins to pass all the milestones you set before it, that is, if it makes it all the way to the finish line and stands out meritorious enough for you to be converted to the stand-alone PDf. You can gladly feel you've done your job. Well done.
The 'PDF' format also goes hand in hand with technology and as far as reading goes, e-readers surpass all I ever expected of them. As an avid reader and prolific writer, I never imagined I'd own a Kindle e-reader. I was one of the first to strongly oppose it, much preferring the charming sensation of a tangible book - held in my hand and carried around. Also, the significance of how any single volume of older-book may have passed through generations of hands was never lost on me. Yet, here I am now, fully endorsing the e-reader for its convenience and the magnificent volume of content stored on a given device. I check my pulse to see if I'm still here!
As writers, we first need to believe in our own direction and allow the time needed to cultivate a strong and unique voice. Not to be afraid to write when the feeling comes and you have something to say. Set out to pass the first milestone, however you choose to go about your writing. It's not easy to begin and there's still more rejection at the end of the line than you first realize. However, once you plant 'that vision' for your work firmly in you and have the will to write each day, nothing stands in your way as you get better at your craft. The finished 'PDF' along with detailed introduction and synopsis, neatly built into your cover page - is the ultimate goal for creative work.
When I began writing and publishing material another generation ago, the system was much different then. First, I had to find a place to type up my notes and carefully preserve the pages in a drawer somewhere, until I found a suitable press to post out my cover letter/article highlight, synopsis and first three chapters. Dutifully waiting for the likeliest outcome of all - and it often took weeks - 'the dreaded rejection slip.' You did this faithfully with each publisher, each time telling yourself you believed in your ability to write no matter what the outcome and your work still had the merit to make it - until some independent magazine told you they were interested! All done by nervous waiting. At which point, you leaped across the floor in jubilation of the fact that your work was accepted for publication. I remember the first time I won an award for an article and received a small cheque. I can't describe the feeling. I felt I'd finally made it.
Of course, the real work was coming back to the page to learn even more. Always learning in a perpetual cycle of giving and taking with writing. In a writing world that's always adapting, learning new trends and what publishers actually 'look for' is paramount to your success.
The industry has come very far, especially in the last number of years from such a stickier process of publishing; where in just a matter of hours or few days, your creative content may be fully featured by an online publisher. It's more possible now than it was and when you write for the love of it and to singularly enrich your craft, you'll begin by accepting only the best of what you produce... the true gems of your writing, your voice and your style will start to shine through, fulfilling your writing dreams. Edited and finished to the highest standard before converting the whole thing into the amazing 'pdf' is what'll make you stand out - as well as a writer to look out for.
In the world of freelance writing, the jobs I took over the years, I noticed a lot of people who hire writers regard writing as tedious! To the writer, it's a never-ending journey to uncover meaning. To be a writer means you simply have to write each and every day, and when you're lucky enough to have a strong base set up. Perhaps, a blog for exposure; a decent word processor with the ability to check spelling and grammar and a 'PDF' converter to turn your masterpieces into the finished work. Then, sent out to prospective publishers, I feel, you're more advanced as a writer than let's say, ten years back and now it all depends on how seriously you pursue the joys of the writing life.
From one writer to another I bid your journey well, especially if you are just starting out. Believe in yourself, in the direction of your work. When you sense the buzz of each stage develop for you and every milestone that you pass, pat yourself on the back. What matters most is what is meaningful to you. When your writing turns into the final publishable file. It's a wonderful thing.