Feedback is fabulous.
Author coaches are awesome.
Rewriting is repetitious and
Plotting is muddy.
Main character – switch. World – build or destroy. Character motivation – change.
Ah, being a newb writer. I’m thankful for good feedback. This time around it means plodding through some new plotting. My secondary character is more interesting and less controversial. So, she becomes the main. Big points on the “more interesting”. I’ve been holding her back since the second draft because I could feel her stealing the story. *sigh* It’s all good. I should have just recognized it. Fortunately she stole most of the story while I thought my old main was carrying it. That means some scenes don’t need to be rewritten. +1. Most of the boring scenes only include my old main character, so they can be ash-canned.
Overall I’ve had a good weekend of plotting. It was muddy inside and out. Stupid rain. Over 9 inches this March for us in the Pacific Northwest. Sheesh. But, I slogged through the mud of my old story, slid around in the mud of it, and have gotten to the other side with some dry earth under my feet now. Time to rebuild.
So yes, I have an author coach. And yes, he is helping me out. The book will be that much better now. I also joined a new group of writers. We meet via Hangouts. I think it will be good. I’m in two writer groups now.
Feedback is fabulous.
I know I will.
Fermented oatmeal + a drink of superfood & Whey protein, then terrible coffee and walnuts.
Quite a breakfast.
The coffee was some breakfast blend (I won’t name the company cause I usually like their coffees, and no, it wasn’t sbux).
Not sure how to describe the coffee. It was like drinking some sentient liquid that was trying to convince me to stop drinking. It wasn’t like drinking coffee that had been filtered between my toes, though that would be a cool description. It wasn’t like hot water and dirty socks, though that would be cool too. No, the coffee left a decidedly unfamiliar and sour taste in my jowls. The walnuts helped.
I know, it was kind of like a bad instant coffee made with the liquid strained from plain yogurt. That’s the right description. 🙂
What I really wanted to talk about was my new coach. My editor recommended I get a coach, oh like a hundred years ago. But, I don’t like to rush into things. Well, I connected with the coach this week and I think things will go swell. Somehow I’ve got to finish editing this first book, get it out to beta readers, final editing cleanup and preparation for the PNWA writers conference by July. I’m nearly 1/3 through this third edit, so while the plan is aggressive, it’s plausible.
Enough for this week.
Back to the editing.
All the best to you and your writing.
I’m editing weekends, probably through the end of April. I’m 14k words into the 3rd draft. Work, work, work. Then on to beta readers, hopefully. 🙂
Also, I found a cool new (to me) website.
Simple editor that will show you reading level, number of adverbs, passive use and complexity of your sentences. You simply paste in some text to the “Write” pane and click “Edit”. Simple!
I typically use Grammarly, which is powerful. However, Hemingwayapp is web based, FREE, and simple. Check it out!
Take one down, chop it around, 98 scenes to edit on the wall.
And so it goes. I’m heads down on the third draft of my first book.
I spent the last few days of December and all of January working on the second book. I got in nearly 30k words. And I like the story so far. Good thing.
But now, back to editing. The third draft “should” be good. I’ve gotten two scenes done this Valentines weekend. I took a four-day writing holiday, President’s day and all.
The goal here is to be done with the third draft before the PNWA writers conference in July. I do well when I have measurable items to accomplish. Just looking at the manuscript as a whole is impossibly daunting. But, looking at it as a collection of scenes to be editing, expanded or deleted makes the effort possible.
Two weekends of writing on the second book and I’m over 6,000 words in. I’m happy with that progress. Actually, ecstatic. My blog url is “firstnovelblog” but now I’m working on the second. I think that’s ok since I’ve not published my first. If it ever gets published.
One more weekend of writing on the second novel and then back to the first. This will be the third edit on the first novel and preparation for beta readers. If I get any. Next weekend will be a four-day weekend. One day off, weekend + MLK day. I should get a bunch done.
I’m using Scrivener still. I take the time now to do a synopsis on every scene and list out the characters and word count. I feel more organized. Hopefully I learned something from my disorganized approach to the first book. Can’t wait for the iPad version of Scriv.
Right now I’m planning to spend a lot of time trying to get the first novel published traditionally vs self-published. I just don’t feel like an experienced enough writer to go the self-pub route. I’d like the help of an agent, etc.
The title of the first novel changed to match up better with the second. I like the new title. It’s a series.
That’s all for this weekend. I’m going to do some arpeggio work on my bass here before lunch and then head over to a meeting of my writer group this afternoon.
What? I think maybe 5 or 6 cups this weekend. Nothing like trying to edit when your arms are shaking. Caffeine. Must have been the answer though. I got through my latest six chapters. Even ran them through Word's grammar/spelling checker, through Grammarly (which is great btw), and Ginger. Read them aloud twice this weekend too. I'm so done with these chapters. Off to my editor. Did you have a successful weekend, too?
For me, the first puff of editing is like a drag off a God-knows-how-old cigarette. I'm expecting this pleasant experience. I loved my cigarettes the last time I smoked. Sure I gave them up for a week. But I'm back. I'm ready for this experience. And, arggh what the hell is this. This reads/tastes like crap. I can't believe I wrote/smoked this. It's enough to make me want to quit. But, alas, there's always an alas, alas I am addicted. I'll smoke this old, stale, crappy cigarette because it is in my mouth. Perhaps the next one will taste better.
Set the manuscript aside, set the manuscript aside…
But I don’t want to. I’m ready to start slicing and dicing, slashing and gnashing.
But, then again, if Stephen King says set it aside, I suppose I ought.
I’m over halfway through “On Writing” and learning some essential stuffs. I’m such a n00b. I guess I had to start somewhere. So, the six chapters I finished yesterday need to ferment, or rise, or stew, or something. I don’t have much time so I shall put them aside for a week. Ok? I know that’s not much, but I’m not Stephen King, so there. I’m going to read this week, and put together some ideas for book two.
Do you set aside your manuscript at break points and let it rest before editing?
Chaps 4 through 9 have been rewritten. And there was much rejoicing. I like this section of the book I guess I better like all of it. Now, I need to curl up with my iPod and headphones, double-sided manuscript, markers and pen. I love this. I love this not. I love this. I love this not. etc. Goal is to be done and ready to ship this version off to my editor before the 21st of Nov. I’m cutting back a night of exercise per week so I should have the time. I’m working sequentially right now, vs pantsing and all over the timeline last winter and spring. This works better. Are you a pantser? Do you work sequentially?
I’ve had a hard time getting into into editing these past months, but August seemed productive. Now I am waiting for copy back from my real editor and I’m trying to get the flow back. The just-write, don’t-edit flow. I’m finding it hard to get out of editing mode. 😦