The But/Therefore Technique of Plotting

Find boring scenes that may not belong in the story by listing the beats (scenes, maybe in some cases chapters) of the story, and if you can put a “but” or a “therefore” between two of these beats, you’re good to go.

If on the other hand you have to put an “and then” between them, you’re in trouble and likely creating a story that isn’t entirely glued together and as cohesive as it could/should be.

Backwards Editing

Backwards Editing sounds interesting, even though misspellings should be handled by the word processor (and simple grammar errors by Grammarly). However, looking at sentences, one at a time, could never be wrong.

How is it done?

You start at the end of the text by reading the last word (aloud), then the second to last, etc. Or, you do the same for sentences.

The point is to prevent the brain from (unconsciously) filling in the blanks with what you already know about your text and make it more obvious what you’ve actually written (or not).

When you look at whole sentences, you check for problems with sentence structure and flow.

I.e. a promising tool for self-editing.

Update: This old gem… Yeah, my current WIP is 150 000 words in the first draft. Of course, I edited it backwards…

I hope you didn’t believe me. It would take a year and a truckload of psychotropic drugs to keep me from eating the screen.

No, backwards editing is likely something that may work for shorter texts and emails, but not for a 150 000 word beast…

Banana control

Neither the gun nor the banana has a will of their own, and still… I bet you’d save more lives with gun control than with banana control…

In 2015 the number of deaths due to gun violence (in the USA) was 13 468 ( while the death toll for food poisoning is only around 3 000 deaths (CDC). So, gun control is lagging way behind the banana control…

Image: By Robert Couse-Baker, CC by 2.0, Link (cropped)