You’ve heard of writing prompts, now we have revision prompts! Each prompt will give you a specific writing issue to check for in your WIP, along with tips on how to fix each. Going through this process one issue at a time will not only help polish your current novel but will also teach you specific ways to improve your writing for your next story.
PREPOSITIONS: Prepositions are a part of speech that tells us where something happened. They are usually small words (of, by, in, on) and are positional words (above, below, nearby, atop). Most often they are followed by a noun (around the corner) or a noun clause (under the oriental rug Uncle Ollie brought back from China).
MULTIPLE PREPOSITIONS: When we speak, we sometimes use two prepositions together to describe where something is. In most cases, however, we only need one or the other. Instead, choose the one that most accurately tells the position of whatever you are describing.
1) The river runs down under Old Farm Rd. (the more accurate preposition is “under”)
The river runs under Old Farm Rd.
2) I ran over to the big oak tree. (the more accurate preposition is “to”)
I ran to the big oak tree.
3) He hung it up on the wall. (the more accurate preposition is “on”)
He hung it on the wall.
This might not seem like a big thing–and it’s not–but it helps tighten the writing by getting rid of unnecessary words. A word here and a word there, when you’re talking about an 80,000-90,000 word novel, can add up!