Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Good Grief

Hemingway said one should edit sober. I'm starting to think he knew what he was talking about.

A certain blindness takes over an author, once a story is told. Well, once it's written down. Case in point... a client wrote a book with the premise being a treasure discovered. After delving into the book for many chapters, I turned to her and asked, "Where's the treasure?" She'd forgotten it. In the details of the book. She's not alone.

The other night, I was reading a chapter of 'Sings' to a friend and realized the chapter was redundant. I've read the chapter ten times before, at the very least. Yet, I didn't realize that Chapter Two and Chapter 12 were the exact same chapter. Different characters, different scenario, but same message, told in almost the same way. Good grief.

As stated in an earlier post, I'd deleted Chapter Two and therefore, Chapter 12 was no longer redundant. Thankfully. In fact, I delighted in the fact that things that I thought were deleted but still wanted known were there -- in all their glory.

I, also, hoped to show the strength of my main character. I thought I'd lost it when I deleted Chapter Three. As I read Chapter 11, I realized that I showed a different sort of strength in my main character. A subtle, yet stronger, strength. This was fun.

Editing can be fun. I'm learning that by these twists and turns that my book is taking. I must confess, I have more fun editing other people's works, which is why I do it for a living, but, because of these new discoveries, I realize that editing my own works is fun, too.

So -- have fun with your editing. Share it with friends. You know I've suggested this before, but it's true. You can't see the forest for the trees, most times. Hopefully, your friends/editor can.


Friday, September 8, 2017

Being Vulnerable

Having someone read my work causes heart palpitations. It goes back to being uncertain about my worth as a writer. I've found, thankfully, that having writing friends close at hand is a great boon. I don't think I'm the only writer out there with security issues. (I do not hold my security blanket while I'm typing, but I might consider it.) :)

A friend and I went through the next two chapters of 'Sings' and her enthusiasm for them heartened me. She noted some neat phrases that completely hid from me. It's things like that that emphasize the importance of sharing.

Find a group or a friend or whatever (Not your dog. My Pippin loves me too much to be impartial.). Be vulnerable, once you've found they understand how to criticize/critique with value. Then, plunge in. Enjoy their comments. Don't take them personally.

Hope you have a blessed, writing-filled day.

PS - Using the Four Agreements facilitate input.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Chop It Down!

There's a commercial that speaks of a person planting an uncertainty tree. I just love that concept. You know I've been living in doubt, and fighting it, as of late. Well, I keep reminding myself, when it creeps from the floorboards, to chop it down.

Two dear friends are going to read 'My Sword Sings' and get back to me. I've not had a lot of feedback on the completed book and - chop it down - I think it only wise to get some. And these folk are writers, which makes them ideal candidates.

I wish I had a group that I could send the entire book to and have feedback immediately, but that's not how the read world works. My son says I should send it off. Damn the torpedoes, Commander Farragut, and full speed ahead. He's right, I'm sure, but.... chop it down!

I've been to lectures about self-publishing, but I didn't pay much attention. I had hoped for a 'J.K.Rowlings' type of deal. That hasn't happened, though the book has changed a bit since I first tried to 'sell' it back in the day.

Going to spend time researching while my three 'editors' read 'Sings.' Wish me luck!


Saturday, September 2, 2017

The Three Hunters

Ah! Life is good. Had a glorious chat with my island friends, my dearest sister-friends from Ireland. Such memories with these two brave, wonderful, and generous women! We went to New Zealand a few times together and had more fun than God should allow! Cemented our friendship, which was born on-line, and drew us as close as can be. Love you, girls! Love you so very much!

I re-finished my first book, My Sword Sings, and am pretty sure it's in its next-to-last revision. I've sent it to my daughter (Oh, girls, might I send it to you!!!???) and she'll give me a good critique. Not good in that it will be full of platitudes, but good in that it will be thoughtful and direct. Bless her heart. Best daughter ever!

Now that Book One is out of the way, I began rewriting Book Two. I laughed because the names have changed since I started this journey into the land of 'Nagara.' Never realizing the scope of the work to be done, I cringed after the first couple chapters. But, I have learned, ever onward, and so, it will be ever onward.

Doubt is, I think, the writer's worst enemy. After the first few chapters, I began to doubt the 'likability' of Book Two. But, God is good, and he showed me that, if my readers grow to love a character, which, of course, I truly have all my fingers and toes crossed that they will love my characters, then, they will rejoice at being given Book Two and will relish it. God willing.

Ah! Life is good. Don't be discouraged, my friends. I, myself, am not going to publish the way I had thought or dreamt, but it doesn't matter. I am going to publish and that, I think is a good thing. I suppose that, being on the net in some way or the other, is akin to being published. It would be nice if my readers enjoy the tale and grow to love the characters, but tonight, I can be happy that the book is done. Even though this is the second time it's done - giggles.