What Writers Are

Taking a day off from either writing or editing leaves me feeling guilty. That being said, I did play me some 13th Age this past Sunday and had a lot of fun unwinding. But I was back to editing today, and I’m making great progress. I’m about halfway done with editing the rough draft, which is pretty amazing considering I’m having to do some rewriting to clean up all evidence of the story lines I’m stripping out. I’m liking the changes. It’s reading much cleaner – flowing better. And I haven’t been hit with any sense of “Man, this sucks!” . In fact, I’m feeling pretty stoked!

Mad Genius Club

It’s four in the morning, or something like that, and having found myself sleepless — no, I actually don’t have any idea why — I’m at my keyboard banging out blog posts, and wanting to work on the current novel, but the mind is foggy from lack of sleep.

And something from a video I watched about strategies for making it indie is running through my mind.  The gentleman, who only writes books about how to make it in indie derided the “write a lot” aka “the brute force” or “shotgunning” strategy as “Sure, it works, but you have to keep writing.”

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Okay, before you get your hopes up too much, allow me to bring things down a notch. The rough draft is finished as of this past afternoon. I stared at it a long time not quite grasping the reality of the situation. It’s a huge step, but I want to be clear, this puppy needs editing. As I mentioned in my last “real” post, the thing turned into a monster, so I’ve decided to strip out two story lines. That will be part of the editing process, and it’s possible that the removal of those story lines will require I finesse some sections of the remaining story in order to keep folks from scratching their heads over references to missing material. I also know one of the fight scenes needs to be amped up.

Even the Shadow doesn’t know what else may lurk in the heart of my story. Let’s face it, I’ve been working on this thing for three years, and so a good half of the book I haven’t read through in over a year. I may find some surprises awaiting me. There could be a few situations where I contradict myself. It happens. Even when you plan things out like I do, there is a certain amount of spontaneity that occurs during the writing process. Things that seem perfectly logical at the time suddenly clash with something that morphed later on into something entirely different.

Some pseudo fun trivia now. The big fight scene that I thought was the last difficult section I faced (you remember, I celebrated it in my last post and acted like the thing was nearly done because I only had this one little dramatic scene to finish up) – yeah, well the fight scene turned out to be the easy part. I rewrote the entire “easy” piece five times. I have never faced such a dog of a scene. It was supposed to be relatively short, a wrap-up of sorts that leaves the audience able to nod and accept that enough threads have been tied up to be satisfying while leaving enough unanswered questions that they’ll look forward to Book IV.

The *&$%$ thing dragged on and on. I started over. Ooh, much better this time. And then blammo, the verbosity monster struck again. Made adjustments. Started again. Made a lot more progress. And … well, you get it. Each time I made it a little further before I realized my original plans were just too much. Then today, I had an epiphany of sorts. I realized the perfect stopping spot was staring me in the face, and the bit I was trying to shoe-horn in would work much better as an ending for Book IV. Happy dance. I started and finished the Epilogue in about an hour. It’s simple and to the point. It’s there to remind the reader that, even though the Dragon Queen story line has been resolved, there is still a bad guy lurking about who needs a good comeuppance.

So, tomorrow the editing process begins. And I’ll make my final selections for title choices and get them posted to my FB group page. I’ll drop in here when it’s live and post a link.

In the meantime, here is a WIP of my updated look for Raven. It still needs some work. For example, that sword has got to go – it’s lame. And it needs a nifty golden glow added to it.



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