I keep finding parallels with writing and gardening. My first writing attempts were rough and far from ready, a bit like a neglected patch of land. Scratching away at the overgrowth is the first step in creating a garden, I find a similar process is required with a first draft. Unnecessary plot lines get chopped out, other threads then get tidied up and pointed in the right direction rather than being allowed to ramble out of control. It is all rather like well pruned roses. Roses need that harsh hack to benefit the plant especially the wall roses that need to be pulled into place and tied down.
Once the paths are sorted then the finer detailed work can follow. Plant supports keep the flower head upright and visible. Cutting away unnecessary descriptions, tightening dialogue, bring action forward are all things that make for easier reading.
Punctuation, spelling, paragraphing, ensuring there is enough white space on the page is like trimming the edges to give a crisp appearance.
And when all that is done, then the tidy up team of beta readers should go through it all to snip off the dead heads, and sweep up any stray leaves and debris you have overlooked and give the lawn a final mow.
Following all those steps should result in something to be proud of. Miss some points and there could be room for disappointment.
Do you have any word weeding tips you’d like to share?