Monday, 27 October 2014

October 19-25

Chapters edited: 24 (out of 35)
Days to deadline: 45

I'm feeling pretty good about how things are going.  I should finish up in plenty of time to be able to give myself a week or so after finishing the chapter edit before going back and doing a final polish before the line edit begins.

I'm starting to get my toes wet on promotion.  I sent an email to Sherrilyn Kenyon's assistant asking if she would be interested in looking at my novel and doing a promotional blurb.  I also looked up how to ask Jeaniene Frost, but all requests to her have to go through her agent and I'm having trouble finding an appropriate way to contact her.  I'm also considering asking Tanya Huff and Jenna Black.  Tanya Huff's books are really funny, but they tend to be lighter than Revelations and Jenna Black's books are more intense, so I'm not sure if they're good fits but I do really like their writing and I feel it is close.

This week, I need to get my IRS tax information started.  I also need to start assembling a list of book review sites and start asking if anyone is interested in doing an ARC (Advance Review Copy) review.

For the last couple of weeks I've been trying to meet up with a friend to get my Facebook site up and running properly.  But life keeps interfering.  For some reason, I just can't figure it out on my own.  I'm user-interface-challenged that way.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Got My Cover!

As those of you visiting the main site may have noticed, I got my cover!

I'm very excited about it and think it turned out amazingly well.  My thanks to Glendon at Streetlight Graphics for doing an excellent job.

Monday, 20 October 2014

October 12 to 18

Weekly update:
Chapters revised: 17 (out of 35)
Days to deadline: 52

I'm starting to think I just might pull this off.  Which probably means disaster is about to strike.  But it's honestly going much easier than I was afraid it was going to.

I put Revelations aside to start on the sequel back at the end of July.  At the time, I knew I had some problems with the manuscript but I thought I had the best possible solutions to them.

After six weeks away, things seem much clearer.  It's easy to see that this scene which was causing me difficulty can just be cut.  Or that scene needs to be expanded. 

But I don't think it's just the time away.  I think it's also having the editor's notes.  I find it easy to get trapped inside my own head and expectations.  Having a different perspective on something makes it easier to see around my own blind spots.

Either way, I'm pleased.  The story is coming together better than I'd hoped.

A friend of mine challenged me to get off my butt and start contacting book review sites to see if any of them will review an Advance Review Copy.  Sadly, I have not lived up to the challenge as yet but I'm going to push myself to do it before another week is out.

Monday, 13 October 2014

October 5 to 11th

Weekly update:

Chapters revised: 9 (of 35)
Days to deadline: 58

Not my best or most promising week but still grinding in the right direction.

The editor's comments have been really useful.  I'm not great at remembering to get inside my character's heads on a regular basis.  I tend to be a mostly visual person, which I have been told would be great if I was writing screenplays, but I want to write novels.  Her notes gently reminding me that it's been awhile since we saw an internal reaction have been invaluable.

I also hadn't realized how much had only been hinted at in the villain sections.  I needed to be more explicit and fight my urge to keep everything a big secret so that people can be surprised.  That urge is the main reason I will never be a mystery writer, even though I love police procedurals and mysteries.  I have to give my readers hints as to what's happening and since I, as a reader, love to be surprised, I end up holding too much back.

Either way, these are still only tweaks for the most part.  I've rewritten three sections to tighten up the plot and keep things active but mostly I'm just adding little bits here and there.  It still takes me about an hour and a half to two hours to properly revise a chapter but it's proving quite doable.

I've had people question why I've spent money on an editor instead of getting the book up for sale as quickly as possible.  This is the reason: because I can't see past my own blind spots and I'm more interested in putting out a quality book than stroking my ego.  I'd rather put out a few good books than churn out a dozen which I'd be ashamed to claim.

I'm hoping that readers will agree with me.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Sept 28 to Oct 4

Writing update:

4 chapters revised
65 days until deadline

I had myself an "eek-what-are-you-doing" moment this week.  I didn't actually get into too much detail for the revision notes from my editor while I was away.  And then I got swamped with catching up with my day job.  So I didn't actually didn't sit down and start working on Revelations until Thursday of this week. 

That's when the reality of dealing with over 300 individual suggestions/corrections plus the material in the 30 odd pages of separate notes started to hit me.  To use the word overwhelmed doesn't quite cut it but it's the best the English language has to offer.

I flat out panicked, my paranoia screaming that I was never going to be able to do this, that I was only kidding myself about being a writer. 

Luckily, I am long used to ignoring my inner voice.  Some people are blessed with inner voices that prompt them towards greatness.  Mine has all the desperate charm of a drowning victim.

I took a deep breath and forced myself to do the math.  I had 68 days until the manuscript is due for the next round of editing.  I had 35 chapters to revise plus 5000 to 10000 words in new material to write (not including little bits and incidental phrases thrown in).  That's a lot of work, but not impossible, provided I make myself sit down and do it on a daily basis.  No more weekends off.

I know that over the next two months there will be days when I can't write/revise.  But I'll have to keep them to a minimal impact by working hard when I get the chance.  I'm going through the manuscript chapter by chapter, looking at the individual suggestions/corrections and the individual chapter notes.  Then there are the overall manuscript notes, which I am keeping in mind but will tackle after individual chapter stuff is done.  I'm hoping many of them will be resolved with the chapter work.

This is the first time I've had an outside deadline for my writing.  When I've set deadlines for myself, I haven't met them.  But this time, I'm determined to do it.

In 45 days, I have to make the final decision or else I'll be paying for missing my slot.  By then, I should know whether or not I have a chance.