Read the draft out loud.
It sounds stupid, I know. However, just by audibly hearing the words on the page, your brain will pick up inaccuracies in the writing and red flags start to pop up. Keep a notebook handy for any quick notes to jot down ideas such as:
Page 12 – paragraph 2: What was the point?
The second tip requires some hardware. If you have a smart phone, you’re set. iOS (iPad and iPhone) offer the Voice Memo app while android offers the app “Voice Recorder“, and you can also use Evernote on any platform (including Windows and OSX). Otherwise, visit a second-hand store, such as a Salvation Army or some form of Thrift Store. Do NOT pick up a broken keyboard, instead look for a little cassette recorder or pocket dictator such as this:
See the brilliance? Not only can you fix things while you read it out loud, but you can also fix things later while you listen to the masterpiece.The reason for the device is simple: record yourself speaking the words. In essence, you are narrating or reading your own story. It’s fine, no one else needs to hear it since this is for editing purposes and almost everyone hates the way they hear themselves speak. However, not only will you find errors within the story as you read it out loud, however, you’ll also hear inaccuracies and other issues when you go back in a week or so and listen to yourself read the story to yourself.
Cheap thrift-store editing.