Sunday, August 10, 2008

The Read-Aloud Phase

Finally, after being sick for almost two weeks, I have progressed to the read-aloud phase of my novel. This time, I combined the read-aloud phase with the hardcopy phase, in an attempt to kill two birds with one stone. For my last novel, I first printed it out and marked it up with a red pen, then after I incorporated all those edits, I read it aloud. I seem to notice different problems with each pass through the novel, but this time, I decided it wouldn't hurt to attempt to do it all at once.

Plus, this time I have an audience for my read-aloud. My heroic husband--who already read the rough draft--has agreed to listen to my read-through. (We occasionally read books together; we read Tom Sawyer and Huckelberry Finn in this manner, and I read him most of Janet Evanovich's One for the Money before he picked it up and read it himself.) We got through 42 pages today before my throat gave out in a coughing fit.

I am pleased with how it's sounding. With my last novel, I made quite a few changes during the read-aloud phase, as what seemed fine on paper didn't quite sound right when read aloud. I'm not making nearly so many changes this time. I think this is because the voice for this novel was so firm in my mind that I was actually able to hear it as I wrote it. For my last novel, the voice really was not this distinctive. First person really was the way to go for this novel.

About 260 pages left to go!


  1. I read much of CMLH aloud, but never did it all at once. But it's sure helpful with editing. You go girl!

  2. Why have I never thought of reading aloud? That's a brilliant idea! Also pretty fun, though not so great for the throat.

  3. Thanks! I think I picked up this tip in a book on business writing. It especially helps for presentations.

    Laura, I like to be prepared to read the whole thing within a few days so I can catch all those pesky inconsistencies.

  4. There's a 'Read Aloud' Phase? Aw, man, I knew I was missing something!

    Hey, have you been over to the Galaxy Express lately? In the comments under the Tuesday, August 12th entry, they were discussing the need for a Jane Austin Sci-Fi Thriller and I thought about you.

  5. Thanks, Kimber! I will check it out!

    The link to the thread is here:

    cool romance conversation

  6. I love the read aloud phase! It really helps getting those things you don't notice when your blurry eyes skim the paper.

  7. That's exactly why I do it! It really helps.


If you are a spammer, your comment will be removed, so please don't bother.