Revising Fiction by Kirt Hickman bills itself as a comprehensive guide to self-editing. IMO, it lives up to this claim. Of greatest value to the beginning writer, Revising Fiction still has a lot to offer to more experienced authors.
Hickman offers answers to nearly every question I’ve heard asked at conferences. Theme, plot, character development, dialogue, emotion, prose, it’s all in there. He cites other sources of info throughout the text and in a bibliography. Hickman draws heavily on his own revision experience and from the classes he’s taught.
A few of Hickman’s recommendations strike me as tedious and overly detail oriented, especially for more experienced writers. Still, my only real complaint is that at times the book comes across as an advertisement for his novel Worlds Asunder since he draws heavily upon it for his examples. That’s somewhat understandable since as the author he has access to earlier, pre-revision copy of his own work, but I would have liked a little more variety.
Nevertheless, I highlighted an number of passages and put this book on my keeper shelf.