I remember being in high school and having to write essays for various classes. About 95% of the time, I would hand in my first draft as my final draft. Editing? Who needs editing? I’m proud to say that my stance on this has changed so radically.
Sitting down with a chapter or conference paper and going through to pare it down, clean it up, fix typos, is actually kind of fun now. Don’t get me wrong, there are days where it’s so hard to get started. But then there’s the day where the goal of “I’m going to work at this for 30 minutes” ends up going for 2 solid hours with the entire piece done. It’s also kind of amazing what and how many errors you can catch in your own writing, that was edited back and forth by multiple people, just by looking at it a couple of months later. Some of the errors made me cringe, even though I know they aren’t the reason the paper was rejected.
We’ve also been starting to do this on the code for our startup. Since the code we’re using was mostly done as we’ve been learning how to do each component, it’s not the best, or most efficient, code we could and should be using. And so this editing pass it’s highly due. So far, we’ve managed to reduce one file by about 30%, just because of old code left behind that wasn’t being used and more efficient methods of doing other stuff. But this is a good time to do it, because we’re gearing up for our full launch in just under 2 months and our biggest roadblock right now is trying to speed up the site.
I’ve definitely been enjoying working on the chapters where I have text to start from more than the chapters where I’m starting more from scratch. They’ve usually ended up quite different from the original text (which is good), but it’s been helpful to be able to look over how I explained it before and then add/subtract as needed.
Anyway, I got another chapter done this week. So I’m now at 5/10 done (as in the first draft of the chapter). Will see if I can get a second one done by the end of the week.