The Praedian Records

J.G. Phoenix

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LGT Editing #1

by | Aug 18, 2021 | Editing, LGT

I’ve decided to try out posting my self editing process as it develops. Brainstorming sessions might also be a thing at some point. This is probably only going to be done for content that’s already published. Maybe recording that sort of thing will help me get more comfortable with the whole process. I’ll be going line by line in a lot of cases. I also like to work backwards from the end of a scene or chapter, so the more of these I do, the closer we’ll be getting to the start of LGT1 rather than the end. I’ll keep in mind how edits to one area affect prior ones so the flow of a scene doesn’t unravel from the bottom. Anyway, let’s get started.

The last line in the chapter is extremely important, so I doubt I’ll ever be satisfied with it.

“I’m here to serve,” Enya smiled, bowing after accepting her things from Irving. “What’s the next item?”

Enya just got hired to work for one of her personal heroes. Being able to end the chapter like this is a major step for her, but I know the way it’s written can be much better. Let’s try this.

“I’m here to serve,” Enya said. She bowed to her superiors with a smile, knowing all was well. “So, what’s the next item?”

There’s no need to point out the fact that Irving gave her back her things. It’s already been mentioned. Granted, I could move the book portion from Irving’s dialogue down to Enya’s, but that could clutter Enya’s line, Enya’s extremely important line. We don’t want that.

As for that new ‘knowing all was well’ part, I wanted Enya’s smile to convey that, but I’m not confident it does. Even with the context of the rest of the scene, the smile feels more isolated, as if it’s not about the entire scene, and the joy and relief she feels about the way things turned out. It still works in context, but I think the smile needs just a little more help. I thought about taking out the smile and leaving in the new part, but somehow, that left Enya with an air of refinement she’s only trying to emulate right now. That’s also why I added ‘so’ to the last thing she said. It reads and sounds more natural from her while deflating some of that real refinement I mentioned.

Next up is Todd and this one makes me nervous.

Not one to be left out, Todd hastily added, “You did good, kid. Trust me, I was there,” and gave Enya a thumbs up.

I’m tempted to scrap the entire line because I’ve put an ‘adequate’ amount of characterization for Todd throughout the chapter already. More over, there might be a better moment and method for him to chime in. This line isn’t especially important, but it does hint at less overt aspects of Todd’s character. Even so, as I write this, I can think of other interesting ways to drop those hints. I’m even considering leaving a version of this line for LGT Chapter 2, near the start. It could easily be placed into another conversation and flow perfectly there.

Yeah, I think it’s decided, then. Let’s omit this line entirely. Anything that’s not carrying its weight in the story needs to be trimmed down until it does, or just be removed. While it’s true, Todd isn’t one to be left out, he’s had plenty to say in this conversation already. he’ll be fine. Promise.

Next up, Irving. When it comes to blending actions and dialogue I’ll probably always be clumsy about it, but that’s no reason not to get better at it. In the last three lines of the Armor of the Unburdened, Irving congratulated Enya, handed her the book and winked at her. It’s not a whole lot, but it’s still a lot, and I blended those actions together like this:

“Well done,” Irving said, offering back the book and Enya’s bag with a wink, “on both of your assignments.”

Still, I’m starting to think something along the lines of, ‘Screw blending it all together!’ … in this one instance, at least.

Irving returned Enya’s book with a knowing wink. “Well done, on both of your assignments.”

It’s even a bit shorter. My diction could always use improvement, but I like this. It stays for now.

The last part of Enya’s assignment for the chapter was to move the Armor in its case onto a slot that basically binds it to Lydia’s treasury. It’s okay, but rereading it a few times, I can think of some improvements.

“Yes!” Enya handed her book to Irving and then approached the case. If Todd had finished with his part, all she needed to do was push the case onto its slot. That would complete the procedure and officially return the Armor of the Unburdened to the Golden Treasury. She knew the case was heavy, even without the armor, so Enya wouldn’t underestimate it. She got the wheels turning with some effort and carefully rolled the whole thing into place. The floor seemed to latch onto the case from underneath and lock it into position. Enya took a step back as mana conduits appeared on the case. Light flowed up through them for a moment, and then the case went dark again.

As for the improvements, let’s try this.

“Yes!” Enya handed Irving her book and approached the case. As long as Todd had done his part, all Enya had to do was push it onto its slot. The Armor of the Unburdened would be officially returned to the Golden Treasury. Enya wouldn’t underestimate how heavy the case was now that the armor was inside, and gave it the full body effort the item warranted. It wasn’t long before the case passed over the slot and was stopped cold by a locking mechanism. Enya stepped back as once invisible conduits lit up with mana. All of the light flowed up the armor’s case in a single long wave before vanishing at the summit.

Even this could probably use some tweaks, but I think it flows better than the old version, so we’ll keep this for now.

Another crucial line cometh.

“Now,” Lydia gestured toward the armor and its case, again, “would you do the honors?”

Enya’s hero utters those wonderful words to her just before that last effort you ready above. … and suddenly it occurs to me that I’m not even sure what I’d change here. Even Lydia’s wording is spot on. Sure, she could say ‘Now then,’ instead of just ‘Now,’ but that doesn’t quite fit her character. Not in this particular instance. Is it really that important? Somewhat. Definitely enough to try to avoid using ‘Now then’ here, especially since that phrase lines up more with Irving’s character than Lydia’s. I can think of a half decent edit for the line in general, though.

“Now, would you do the honors?” Lydia gestured at the armor. There was still one more job to do.

It’s about the same length but there’s a bit more said in spite of that. I can’t say it flows better or worse, though.

Let’s keep it for now.


Alright, that’s all for now. This was just a test run to see how I work under these conditions, and I’m liking the results so far. Future posts will be much longer since I’d like to do entire scenes and not just a few lines. First things first.

Session #2



  1. LGT Editing #2 | The Praedian Records - […] Session #1 Session #3 […]

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