Sunday, December 12, 2010

Busy Year

So, it's been forever since I've posted, but it's not because I dropped off the face of the earth. The novel is finally done. Really done. Reworked, polished to perfection, and slaved over unlike anything I've ever done before. This is what happens when you work with a fantastic editor. You can chose to get overwhelmed, pout, or you put your butt in the seat and get to work. I chose work. The upside to all this work is that by February, I expect to submit it.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Suicide Year review

Many thanks to Amos Larson for reviewing The Suicide Year on Amazon. And an even bigger thanks for his kind words.

I'm about to get back to writing. I've taken a leave of absence from my work in progress to think about it. Forcing myself to stay away makes me want to work on it more. I told Amie Evans that I may retype the entire thing. The idea wears me out, but it may be the best way to get a fresh perspective. After weeks of meditating on what I need to do, I came away with a single word: conflict.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Break Tme is Over

I opened my story for the first time in many weeks and finally got back to work on it. I meant to wait until I returned from Saints and Sinners Literary Festival, but I had nothing else to work on, and I've put a lot of thought into the characters since the last time I worked on it. The new insight helps. But oh, I'm getting a bit tired of this story. That's usually the sign that it's ready for submission, but I don't think so in this case. There's still a lot of work to do. Ugh.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Break Time

I had to step away from this project to think about it. I've had some great insights, but I won't have time to work on them for another week or so.

This is what I'm thinking about: A white board, or something like that, to draft out where each character is emotionally in each scene.

Working on pieces is making me lose sight of the work as a whole. One of my characters is shades of gray slippery, and I let the good far overshadow the bad in the latter half, because I like this character. But that's not right. So the moral ambiguity has to continue.

I can't wait to get my hands, and head, back on this. But first, other projects.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

This is Nice

Sheela Lambert mentioned The Suicide Year in her bisexual books of 2009 list.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Still Working On the Rewrite

I got my new first chapter back from Kelley at Sterling Editing.

Everything I feared was wrong with it was true. But this is good. I cleaned it up, fixed the time line, and got rid of a bunch of crap I didn't need.

The only thing that bothers me about this is that I know there are problems. I know what the problems are. But somehow, I can't see them until someone points them out. You'd think I'd know by now. Apparently not.

Yet, I still love this process. If you write, and you're serious about it, treat yourself to a good editor. One caveat - you have to be able to listen and never take it personally. If honest critique about your story makes you defensive and angry, don't dump your diva meltdown on some poor editor.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Back to the Beginning

I won't say that I love my words, but I'll admit that I have a deeper affinity for some stories, passages, and chapters than others.

It shouldn't be so hard to move the previous first chapter of my WIP to the second chapter. It's not as if I deleted it. But I'm having a hard time warming up to the new first chapter, and I'm afraid it will show in my writing.

I sent the new first chapter to Kelley at Sterling editing. She knows the story, so she'll be in a good place to view it in the context of the whole story as well as how it works as the opening sequence. Can you tell how much I value this outside advice? She has no ego tied up in the work as I do, so she can be objective about it where I'm obviously having problems letting go.

Maybe it isn't love of my words. Maybe it's obsession. I need to get over it.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Finally Done

I almost titled this Free At Last, but I have too much respect for Dr. King to attach his words to my work.

The rewrite is finally done. It still needs work. Oh man, does it ever, but I finally got everything to fit in the right sequence. The happiest news is that I'm well over 50,000 words now, which was the minimum I needed. The original was only 47,000 words. And well over 50,000 means I can cut if I need to.

I have no problem with the new material I wrote for most of the story, but the new first chapter can't seem to please me. I'm still too attached to my old first chapter. It's silly, but I feel sorry for it. It tries so hard. I don't think any chapter in a book carries a heavier burden.

The first chapter has to:
Set the tone
Set the stage/show the world
Introduce the main character
Put the story into motion
Introduce or at least hint at the main conflict (hmmm. not sure if I hit that one)

oh, and be riveting so that the reader is drawn into the story.

The funny thing is that if it were a short story, all that plus conflict and resolution would be no problem, but for some reason, for a novel, it seems harder.