So… I’ve started revising Devil’s Blood. Again.
Anyone who’s been stalking me for a while knows that I’ve already revised the book three times since I self-published in April of 2016. Well, I’m revising again.
I went to a job interview out of state this past week, and I took it for some reading before bed. Helps me relax.
I didn’t even get past the first chapter.
I was utterly disgusted with it – the sudden changes, the repeated sentence structure, the lack of emotional output from Malone, THE TYPO ON THE FIRST PAGE, the too-quick pacing… I informally apologize to all those who read it like that.
Geeze. THIS is why I didn’t land an agent the first time. Because It wasn’t good enough – the writing was subpar. I see that now. (Time will tell, yo.)
In that first draft, I left out a lot of narration because I let someone tell me that narration was bad. I left someone tell me that narration = passive tone = bad writing. Nope. But I had to learn it on my own.
Narration works with action to create a seamless flow in a story, to deliver action and support it with narration, character emotion, and thought, to supplement. Not derail. It’s necessary to understand your characters.
Ha – I’m on chapter 8, and I’ve already added just over 10,000 words. The first chapter got remodeled with about 3,000 of those.
My mom said it was better – more narration to supplement the action. One thing reviews and betas commented on was that Malone didn’t show much emotion – readers didn’t feel a connection to her.
I’m hoping to have solved that. This time, I’ll hire a proper editor before I publish the fourth revision – I’ll have to have another cover made, because I’ve added too many pages for the current cover to work, unless I make the font like a 8 point. (Tiny.)
I’m also thinking of going with IngramSpark to have access to a hardback edition, too. There’s just something comforting about holding a hardback book in your hands, feeling the weight of it – it feels like I’m reading something special.
I mean, when I’m looking for a new book to read, I’m much more apt to pick the hardback copy than the softback. Personally, I hate when softback covers start to curve. Bleh.
I’ll keep y’all updated. I’ll host a giveaway or something when it’s finished.
One thought on “Update – New Revison”
This comment also refers to the face-lift, pt. 2.
We are not perfect, never will be, but we keep going. To let the frustration win, to give up writing, is worse than the idea of failing, it’s allowing ‘others’ to judge our worth.
Writing is a craft, honed and learned through hours (10,000) of mastery of each little element that makes up the concept of story, that gives the premise of character, that opens the heart and mind of a reader. Or the reader.
Do not allow others to dictate what is ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ for a story – it belongs to you until it’s finished, and then it belongs to each reader as they read it.
I’ve had 3 reviews of Agoness (written for male readers aged 14-24), and each review is totally different. These are experienced readers and reviewers, and their comments are related to how the story is to their world, not at all about how I envisaged it would be, or must be.
I could go back and change all the things they’ve mentioned that don’t work, I could flog myself for doing the ‘wrong’ thing by the reader. I could give up, because obviously I’m missing something.
No. What did I do? (after the few moments of heart-break, that is?)
I went back to writing the story that is the WIP. I wrote words associated with another story. I am taking note of what was said, how things could be better from that reader’s perspective, and I will adapt to fix the things mentioned by all three. That’s the only given for me. Not every reader is going to like the story.
One book does not make an author.
One author makes many books. That is your story now. You know you can tell a good story. You’ve done it. Okay, not perfect, could do with some work. Every single book I’ve ever read (every single one, no joke) has something that is an error, or an error of fact, or bad grammar, or something else that needs fixing.
Mostly, if a reader loves the story, they either acknowledge or ignore and move on with the story.
What does that mean? If the story moves at the pace to keep the reader following in the mind of the character (being the method reader/character) you win. They continue with the story regardless of the little things.
I have (and now it’s confirmed by the reviewers) a ‘thing’ about too much description, especially of setting. I’m going to fix that in my next book.
And in the end, know this: you are an author, a storyteller, and you will continue learning things about your craft for as long as you keep doing it.
And trust your own instincts about the story, regardless of what another person offers as advice (you know that adage about opinions?).
Trust the characters to tell you (from the backstory, worldview, etc. you give them) what it’s about.
The hardest thing for me (and the main reason I unpublished a few books) was the inability to truly ‘show’ the inner character, to let the character be a whole person, to let it all hang out. It’s hard, because of where it comes from. Which is not character, is it? A bit of us goes into every one of them, and sometimes it takes a supreme amount of courage to do that.
You’ve got what it takes, and you know it, so keep the chin up, soldier on, etc. etc. And write ten or so books, then come back to the ‘frustration’ post and see how you feel then.