1. Turn off and unplug your machine.
At long last, you feel like you did it. You type ‘the end’ on your last page. Yes, it smells like victory is yours. After days/weeks/months/years of hard work, it seems you have finished writing your manuscript. You’re seen grinning, squeaking, jumping up and down, feeling insane with pride and happiness.
You heard it’s best to step away from it for a while. You decide to let the story rest for a few days/weeks/months. It sounds like you deserve a break, anyway; you watch as your computer switches off. There appears to be dust on the screen. You ask yourself when was the last time you cleaned your flat? You start browsing through your music choices, pick an album, grab your duster and get to work.
2. Locate your filters
You find it hard to stay away for long. You switch on your computer and read an article on creative writing. It appears you may have overused filters. You realise that you created a distance between the reader and the story by doing so. Thanks to the internet, you are able to find a list of filter verbs. You feel like Your heart beats faster when you read it.
You remember There is an option to find words on documents, you could simply type Ctrl+F. You choose to search the verb ‘think’ first, and the minute you start to type it, you see your monitor lights up like a Christmas tree.
3. Take out and clean your filters
It looks like You still have a lot of work to do— you experience an extreme moment of lassitude, hear yourself moan. You know It’s time to rid your text of all those unwanted words, to find a way around them. You decide to Stop procrastinating and get to work… soon.
4. Replace the filters.
Rephrasing, editing, deleting, is hard work. Hours/days/weeks/months/years later, you have done it. It’s time for a well-deserved break for a job well done. While drinking a cup of tea, you research the subject further. You forgot a couple of filters. It’s a never-ending story.
After hours/days/weeks/months/years of intense frustration, you are done. You read your text one last time, smiling with relief. The story flows better.
A new article catches your eye. Adverbs are not a writer’s friend… You do a quick search for words ending in ‘ly’ and curse loudly.
Delphine Gauthier-Georgakopoulos is a Breton writer, teacher, mother, nature and music lover, foodie, dreamer. She has a weird sense of humour, loves butter, needs coffee, hates easy opening packaging. She lives in Athens, Greece.