Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Losing those dang words...aka dealing with editing.

Recently one of my very dear friends plied me with questions about writing. She's looking at finally jumping into writing and is just learning all the weird stuff.

I mentioned editors and having to lose lots of words.

Most of those come from my developmental editor--one problem with being a pantser is a tendency to go wandering off track. The detour makes sense at the time, but then another bright and shiny plot direction takes over and I have a lovely dead-end.  Hanging in the middle of the book. (Or more- my rough drafts often look like suburban neighborhoods with a cul-de-sac every few miles ;)) 

My wonderful, awesome, editor points out those , "Umm, WTF?" moments ( my words, not her's ;)).  She doesn't tell me to remove things per se, just points out where I have gotten lost in some strange side alley and that it's really not helping the book. I adore her for it.

So I end up often slicing a fair amount of words after I get edits back from her. My new writer friend's point was--what if you really like those words. A VERY valid question.

However, when you're creating something, a novel, novella, short story, whatever, you have to look at the big picture. And anything that makes the big picture stronger, needs to be followed through.  Obviously a big part of this process is having folks you trust and who understand your voice and story. But it's also up to the author to be willing to let go a few awesome words (or a few thousand *cough*) to make the work stronger.

I still save my larger cut sections, just to make my inner rough draft writer feel better that I can get them back if needed.

I've been writing a LONG time, and I've never needed them. But ya never know.

So yeah, losing those hard fought for words can hurt, but if they make your remaining words better-- ya need to do it!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Convention recovery!

So, I had intended to post a witty and insightful blog DURING the Romantic Booklovers Convention last week. 

Yeah, that didn't happen. Between computer issues (my new laptop apparently HATES Las Vegas- this is two for two in the last 6 months) and the general mayhem, stress, and madness that is RT- no blog was conceived. :(

BUT- I can sneak in a recovery blog!

This was my fourth RT--and my last for at least a while (still hoping it will come to San Diego sometime!  ;)) Each one has been full of good times and not so good times, but all four have been pretty dang cool.

When I first started going, I was unpublished. I'd been writing for a long time *cough* but was just starting to get serious about it again. There were so many wonderful panels! Even though I don't write romance, I completely felt comfortable at that first RT (and still do ;)). 

This last one was my blow out- did the signing at the book fair again (awesome!), co-hosted a reader party with seven other authors (also awesome!), did Club RT, made a raffle basket for club RT, and found out I am really not fond of the Rio Casino ;).

I had an insane time running around (and as anyone who was there will tell you- that was a LONG haul from the rooms to the convention--even for someone who walks a lot like me ;)), meeting readers, other writers, reviewers, bloggers, and the RT volunteers--who were AWESOME!! There is absolutely nothing in the world like RT. Seriously, if you love books with romance- you HAVE to go to one- even just once (most likely you'll be hooked though ;)).

I had to rent a van to get everything for the reader party up there, spent the full week up there- drove up last Monday, then drove back two days ago. Went back to the day-job yesterday. I'm still not fully unpacked and I have a nasty cold. But ya know what? It was so worth it!

If you went this year, or a past year, share your fav RT stories! 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

#IWSG-Pushing yourself and changing defeat

Welcome one and all to yet another episode of How the Writer Turns!  Today's saga is brought to you by the awesome folks behind the Insecure Writers Support Group, an institution created by Captain Alex, where writers across the land gather monthly, and in one voice, shout our fears into the great void!

Join Us!

Today is all about pushing oneself, failing, getting back up and pushing some more.  For the last three months or so, I've been trying to get two books out. Yeah, not the brightest idea, especially when I have a full time day job as well.  But, I was working on book three of the fantasy series, when book one of the space opera trilogy started getting pushy.  She'd been written some time ago, and had already gone through first round edits. Things got worse once she had an awesome cover.

She wanted out.  If you have seen that cover off to the right- Warrior Wench- yeah, the heavily armed one, she is hard to say no to.

So I tried to do both.  The Emerald Dragon was the first focus, but in between editing rounds for it, I'd work on Warrior Wench.

Last Monday I admitted defeat- or rather an admittance of delay-for Warrior Wench and set her up as a pre-order.

The Emerald Dragon is up as an ebook (*points over to the right side of your screen for the handy link ;)); but still waiting for the print proofs to let the print version go live.

And, I've realized how hard I have been pushing myself. Not only the books, the full time job, but next week is the Romantic Times Booklovers Convention--the event is insane- plus I'm co-hosting a party which takes a lot of wrangling. I'm tired. I'll also be signing at The LA Festival of Books this coming Saturday.

But I pushed myself. I didn't let setbacks slow me down, instead I adapted my thinking and moved forward as best I could. And ya know what--it feels good :).

So, go push your limits today, see how that works for you :).

And happy IWSG DAY!!