Let’s get started on the third and final week of our adventure for writing the first draft of a nonfiction picture book in just three weeks.
As you can see on the calendar we’re following, today and all this week we’re going to work on self-editing our picture book manuscript. This is also a great time to catch up on segments you may have fallen behind that you haven’t yet written.
Start your self-editing session by fact checking any spot in your manuscript that you stated a fact. Be sure you have at least one primary source or three other sources to verify each fact you state.
Read over your mentor text again so it’s fresh in your mind as you’re revising your own.
I’ve posted a self-editing rubric for you to use during your self-editing sessions. This will give you some guidelines on what to check for as you go over your manuscript multiple times.
You can download this free rubric at the site of my writing buddies, Writing According to Humphrey and Friends. Just scroll down to the section on rubrics and click on the following printable pdf file:
Nonfiction Picture Book Self-Editing Checklist
If you’ve gone over your word count, take a few minutes to trim it down. See if there are any big chunks that aren’t necessary and can be cut. Be sure to save these for potential use in a sidebar or the author’s note or a website you can build for your book. I also like to trim my word count by going through the manuscript and deleting one word in most sentences.
And finally, if you plan to include sidebars, today is the day to start researching and writing them.