As chronicled ad nauseam before, getting back into the swing of things with a book is miserable and near impossible. However! The great thing about walking away for a month at a time is that I get a little more distance from the work and a smidge more perspective. Which is good, because I love to fight and wrestle with every round of edits and feedback. And by love I mean hate but can’t leave alone…
My excuse for distraction today was good though; woken up a couple hours early, and then glued to the computer tracking forest fire news - crazy year with flooding and fires in the interior of BC. But since there’s not actually anything to, you know, do about it, I mostly just Googled, tweeted and then, of course, needed a nap. So. Here we are post-supper and I’m finally forcing myself to log a couple hours doing what I apparently really want-but-don’t-want to do.
Editorial feedback was awesome…and as per usual, challenging and disappointing. Amidst effusive, ornate praise, I think I detect a warning signs that more needs to be done. On a story level, I’ve solved the major problems set forth by previous rounds of editing - the plot is tighter, motivations clearer, tension higher, characters more engaging… but. But. Always with the but. There are still some problems with what I think of as pretty key plot points that need a fix - and though my editor seems to think that’s a quick and easy thing, inevitably I seem to see those quick fixes as an opportunity to radically overhaul and come up with new and exciting twists. Which is hopefully long-term good, but means some short-term misery for me. And since there was a line edit kind of snuck in on the side of this round, I’ve got quite a lot of work to do shrinking scenes, simplifying the language and trying to figure out when I’ve over explained and left readers lost in a sea of words, and when it’s just confusing to cut any further. So, yeah, lots of work and the promise that, if I do go with trad pub, agents will probably want to see major rewrites. Which is not terribly surprising given how different people are, but is concerning if it’s an indicator that the story’s not there yet, and doesn’t bode well for my hopes of being nearly done this process, lol.
So yeah, I tend to ignore praise and dig straight into the warning signs beneath the surface, which is unnecessarily dark and anxiety-ridden, but also very pragmatic as there’s always more work to do. The good news is, the story is getting awesome and closer all the time to being in the hands of readers (and freeing me up for future projects!) …the not so good news is, I still don’t know when that time will come exactly, or what-all needs to come in the intervening period. But hey, at least I managed to get around to rewrites today. Small victories!
Before I let go of the story for the month of editing, I made a bunch of potentially spoilerriffic notes on what needed work. Now I can’t quite remember what they meant, but for posterity:
Reveal earlier, Cole resist identity, come to terms during climax
Ash pushes Serovate in? Or otherwise contributes
Repeat remember lessons
Revise the Tower or the Towers of Refuge to just Refuge. Name the uniform and masks and headbands with meaning. Justification? Protections? Modesty?
Start Time: 6:45 pm
Location: Abbotsford; home; chair