Life in progress

Just Jot It January 1st – Persnickety


It’s a dilemma I deal with every time I write a blog post: do I write freely and not take hours poring over my grammar and choice of wording or do I edit my posts to death? To be persnickety or not to be persnickety? That is the question. I wonder how persnickety Shakespeare was? Then again, he probably had an editor.

Seriously, I’d love to be able to just write and release. But for the interests of my writing career, should I have a paid one one day, I demand perfection (or near perfection) from myself. After all, I never know who’s going to come looking. Perhaps someone famous or even better, someone who can get my proverbial foot in the door of the publishing industry will visit my blog. A line or two is all it takes to make an impression, and I want it to be a good one.

I know I’ve asked this question before, but it’s been at least a year so I think I’ll ask again. Who knows, maybe those who have already answered have changed their practices. Oh, the question? It’s this:

How many times, on average, do you edit a post before you hit the publish button? And how do you do your best editing – in the window you write in, or the preview? If I didn’t have the preview screen I’m sure my posts would all be a mess. What I really want to know is, how persnickety are you?

The “Persnickety” prompt is brought to you by Sirius Bizinus at his new home, An Empty Pen. Make sure you go say hi!

JJJ 2016

To find the rules for Just Jot It January, click here and join in today. It’s never too late! And don’t forget to ping back your January 1st post here!

Author: Linda G. Hill

There's a writer in here, clawing her way out.

95 thoughts on “Just Jot It January 1st – Persnickety

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  3. As an aspiring writer myself I totally agree with you that whatever you have written on your site should be spick and span. Unfortunately, I’m also the kind of person who presses publish way too soon and then spends the next day or two going back and editing bits and pieces here and there. Very annoying!


  4. I tend to revise at least twice in my word processor (that’s where I set up all my posts). I also use templates for all my regular features, so, when I know those parts that don’t change are OK, I don’t have to focus on them.

    I review at least once more while pulling together the links, videos, and images for each post, and then preview and tweak when I think I’m done.

    And I still miss things…

    I just hope that anyone reading my blog will overlook a few mistakes, especially given the volume of posts I publish, and the content density of those posts.

    I give a lot to my blogging – and more to my writing, and my family I’ve never claimed to be an editor, and I named my blog Lovely Chaos, so I don’t think I’m promising a level of perfection I can’t measure up to without taking from other important areas of my life.

    My approach? I do due diligence, publish, and move on with my life. If I catch something, and I’ve got the time and focus available, I’ll pop in and fix it – but I’m a human, and humans err sometimes…

    My opinion is that, with your ‘In Progress’ titles, you’re not advertising perfection either. I’d say do what’s reasonable, and doesn’t make you nuts. And then, take a deep breath, and let it go out into the world, even if it’s got a zit or two….

    You know, I think you’ve just given me my ROW80 sponsor post! THANKS!!!!!! =D

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha! You’re welcome. πŸ™‚ Putting it the way you have, when you think about it, it’s the imperfections in something like a quilt that makes it special. Let’s think of writing like that, eh? πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      • Actually, I was thinking of quilts when I wrote that comment! =)

        I see it like this – I’m human. Humans aren’t perfect. I don’t need to be perfect – in life, in blogging, or in writing.

        I just need to do my best, then move on.

        My goal is to communicate – honestly, but n0t necessarily perfectly. =)

        Liked by 1 person

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  6. The perfect is the enemy of the good. When editing for perfection, in hopes of impressing that one particular person who will help your career consider that that person’s idea of perfection will have to match yours in order for it to be effective. “Good” is more of a mutual perception. But that’s just my opinion.


    • This is true. Correct grammar and spelling go a long way, however, to prevent distraction of what might be good.
      On the other hand, even spelling can’t please everyone; we can only honour our favourite ways… πŸ˜‰


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  14. I don’t post that often – maybe three times a week. Probably because I am persnickety! About 10 drafts per post.


  15. Using my phone for everything (and using Swypeβ„’ to type) really necessitates me editing as I go along, especially with predictive text, after which I usually do one read-through to pick up any punctuation and publish straight away.

    I find any tinkering after the post is finished usually just spoils it, so everything you see is almost always written in one draft with no extra edits.


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  18. Correction! I don’t know how that “with” got in there. It must be gremlins. Sorry.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. First, I write it down in longhand, editing as I go, and then type it for publishing. I believe it is a courtesy to one’s readers to write as correctly as possible.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Did a post. Don’t know where the ping went. Sooner or later I’ll figure this out.


  21. I’m quite persnickety! My last post went through 13 revisions! I’m like you, Linda. I want my writing to be the best it can be because you just never know who might be reading it. But I also edit a lot because I think it’s only fair to my readers, new and old. It hurts my head to read anything that has typos and even minor grammatical errors so I assume it would bother other readers. Not to say that mistakes won’t still sneak through. I use the Preview as well, but even with multiple revisions, a misplaced comma or misspelled word will slip through. I’m a perfectionist at heart, but I try to have my limits. (That said, I even reviewed and revised this comment.) Happy New Year, Linda!


  22. I’m a born worrier, so I edit a good many times before I publish. The problem is, the next time I read my post again on my site, I always, always, always find mistakes, clumsy turns of phrase, questionable punctuation or whatever. I just can’t seem to avoid it.


  23. I used to be read and reread posts a million times. Now, I skim read it over once and hit publish. To be fair though, I haven’t written substance in a long while. I do find when I blog from my phone, I barely proof read. But when I blog from a computer I take my time, proof read like crazy and even write more substantial material.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. It varies. Some posts, I don’t edit. Some, I mess with a little. Some go through draft after draft before ever seeing the preview window. I edit best when I print it out and tear at the words on paper. Happy new year Linda.

    Liked by 1 person

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  28. Unless I am doing SoCS or 1linerWeds, I edit several times per post. I do almost all my editing in the editor itself, although I do check the preview, especially if I have included links to make sure I have them put in properly. So I guess I’m pretty persnickety!


  29. I am definitely not as persnickety as you are as regards to my blog. I tend to write it correcting as I go, then hit ‘publish.’ It is then I realise that I have made a mistake (if I’m lucky), and go to correct it. Otherwise, if I have not noticed it, it remains there in all its hideous glory for everyone to see!

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Pingback: Just Jot It January: Persnickety: Acrostic | willowdot21

  31. I think that Shakespeare (or any other famous writer for that matter),was very persnickety about his works, but I am sure he wrote a lot more freely in his personnel communications. But I am sure there is still a lot of literary merit to his letters to his dear Aunt Gertrude.

    Liked by 1 person

  32. Hi Linda I do know exactly what you mean about checking and rechecking your work! I do check and recheck my work too! That is why I love the SoCs because I a not allowed to edit it.
    I have just been back to my post for today and corrected a few things after reading yours !!!! I seem to do a lot of hasty editing just after posting !! even after using the preview.
    Talking of today’s post Persnickety is not a used word here we tend to say Pernickety which means : : fussy, difficult to please, difficult, finicky, over-fastidious, fastidious, over-particular, particular, faddish, finical, dainty, punctilious, hair-splitting, exacting, demanding, critical, overcritical;. So what a difference an S makes.
    Have a great day Linda and happy New Year to you and all of yours! <3xxxxxx


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  34. PING!

    I hit Publish before you :/ Would you mind to delete my other ping on your previous post?


  35. I am not persnickety about posting. I generally open the window, have at it, read it through and publish. Then, I usually find at least one error, go back and fix it. When I write a blog post that’s over 1000 words, I usually ask for a proofreader. I just get sick of looking at it! Spacing issues are my worst enemy on WordPress, and depending on my level of tolerance, I will sometimes go into HTML and fix it.
    I am persnickety about a lot of things, but it’s just a blog πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

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