When to stop editing

I am currently editing my first book in the MORE series. For some reason, I am doing a lot of editing this time around. Perhaps it is because this is my first work in the contemporary gay erotic romance genre. Perhaps it is simply because with each piece I write, I learn more and more about the writing process. Whatever the reason, I am happy with the way it is turning out. Writing and rewriting over and over again works for me. It always has.

I have always been a draft writer. My writing process is to write draft after draft, chapter by chapter, until I feel like the story is finished (most times working off a master outline that I tweak as I go). Then I move on to the actual editing process. During editing, I look for grammatical errors, spelling errors, overused words, unnecessary words, passive voice, etc. I just keep rereading the draft, highlighting errors or areas that need improvement with each pass through the story.

So, how do I know when I’m done editing?

Well, quite simply, I stop when the page turns white. When I read the draft and highlight only one or two words/phrases in the entire manuscript (no matter how long the work), then I know it’s ready. I know that I have changed as much as I can. That doesn’t mean it’s perfect. It means that I have done my best work. That’s when I know it is ready to let someone else read it.

Edited to change the series title, 2014