Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Rough Draft’

For Me, Final Edit Did Not Mean FINAL edit

October 22, 2012 Leave a comment

Ok, so more than one person is apparently confused about my editing process.  Since announcing that I was now moving into compiling my manuscript edit of Under the Darkened Moon, people have been saying to me things like, “But I thought you already did your ‘final’ edit?”

It’s true, I did do something that I did refer to as my “FINAL” (capital letters and all) edit.  But it didn’t mean that is was my “final” edit.
Read more…

Actually, I Get Really Scared When People Say Things Like This About My Work

May 28, 2012 Leave a comment

Megan, one of my reviewers, has sent me a response to questions I asked of her after she finishing reading the last draft of my novel. She has been one of my best sources for critique, giving both praise and scorn when necessary. She’s been reviewing my drafts for some time now and she has seen both the original, very rough draft and the most recent one. I was very pleased when she opted to rank where my book in comparison to other novels she has read.

Megan writes:

Ok, I’ve read about 20 books in the fiction/fantasy genres over the last two years. Here is how I would the top fifteen in my opinion:

1. The Dark Tower (The Dark Tower Vol 7)
2. The Hunger Games
3. The Mistborn Trilogy
4. Under the Darkened Moon
5. Theft of Swords (Riyria Revelations Vol 1)
6. Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter
7. Paladin of Souls
8. The Name of the Wind (Kingkiller Day 1)
9. The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
10. The Girl Who Played with Fire
11. Catching Fire
12. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
13. Towers of Midnight (The Wheel of Time)
14. A Game of Thrones (A Song Of Fire And Ice Vol 1)
15. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest

I think with a little bit of polishing you have a great story here!  The story might be a little weak in places, but honestly what novel isn’t? However, in terms of the genre that it is in I found it rather well contrived and sufficient unique and pleasing. I think you did something that few authors can do these days and that is tell a story, a complete story in a single book.  Frankly I am so sick of everything being a trilogy!  Good luck over coming the stigma of being an unpublished author which I think is going to be your biggest hurdle with this book.

I appreciate this reviewer’s high marks for my story. I was kind of taken aback by it. I mean, most people who have been reviewing the book have a lot of positive things to say about it, but for it to be ranked in someone’s mind with some widely acclaimed and read novels really gives me hope that I have actually done a good job.

Thanks Megan for the praise.  But it still scares the crap out of me when you say things like this.  Someone once warned me that what literary agents and publishers like is often not the same as what people who read like.

Encouragement From My Friend Doug

May 26, 2012 Leave a comment

One of my reviewers, Douglas, has given me hope:

“I would say that your novel ranks in the same league with published works such as Flank Hawk or The Blade itself by Joe Abercrombie. If those works can be published then yours should too. It’s much better than a lot of what is published these days. You have definitely taken a lot of the critiques given to your rough draft and made this much better. I think that for your first novel it is a sparkling achievement.”

HA! Now time to get disapointed I suppose as the rejections roll in.

Submitting, Editing, Reflecting And New Stories

March 12, 2012 Leave a comment

So much going on. I have finalized my short story Second Chances and am going to starting submitting it for publication. Since it is based as sort of a prologue to my novel Under the Darkened Moon I had to get very close to completion of that project to work out any discrepancies first. As for that novel, it is still in the editing phase. I am about 80% done with my second serious edit. There have been three edits and four versions of the story in all (rough draft, rough edit, first edit and now second edit).

I have learned a lot by writing it including how petty other writers can be and how what one person finds thrilling others find boring. Overall however, reviews from people who have been reading it are positive. You cannot please everyone though. Lots of comments along the lines of, “better than much of what gets published,” in Fantasy literature. So I am encouraged by that.

Right now that novel is sitting as I am working on Her Lovely Blood which is turning into a story that will be not all that unfamiliar to anyone well versed in the stories of ancient Greek gods. No, it is not a copy of one such story. I only mean that it is similar in the sense of the players and how the plot will twist and turn with gods meddling here and there. The trick is going to be to keep the story seeming logical without any, hopefully, unwarranted excursions into the realm of doing something unbelievable to save the story’s heroine from peril.

Right now the novel is 16,666 words and growing by the day. It seems that it will likely be a trilogy or at the least a first book and then a sequel to complete the story arc. The overall ending is unwritten although I do have three alternatives that I am keeping in mind as the story unfolds. This first draft is being free written with very little editing so far.

Short Story “The Yoke” Rough Draft Completed

December 14, 2011 Leave a comment

“The Yoke” has just completed being drafted. It stands at 6,069 words including a short epilogue.

Summary: “The Yoke” is a story about four adventures who are together not of their own free will but out of a macabre necessity. The party encounters a danger that threatens them all and forces them to chose their fate and their future.

Feedback Received On Short Story “Second Chances”

November 7, 2011 Leave a comment

I have received my feedback on my short story “Second Chances”, a prologue to the novel “Under the Darkened Moon” which I am also working on. That novel is now in its second go through after I completed the rough draft two weeks ago.

I asked people to be critical of the short story, whether or not they liked it and to point out places where improvements were needed.

I have come to conclude that either the story is near perfect or the people who I asked to comment on the story were not willing to give it the sort of critical eye it requires. Now I have to decide how to proceed. I did get some opinions on how to fix some of the verbiage which I am going to implement. But the general consensus among all that read it was that it was a very good story. No one had more than five or six comments and nothing groundbreaking that would cause me to rethink major parts of the story. Everything was minor.

But I will also probably submit the story to a second round of screening to a new group of proofers for their take. While it is possible that the story really is as good as my first round of readers said it was, I just would feel better making sure.

I mean, I have been writing for years. I know how to do it. But since fiction writing is a new thing for me, I need to make sure I get things right before I move this story forward.

Getting Ready For A New Project

October 19, 2011 Leave a comment

I was brainstorming some ideas for my short story, “The Yoke”, last night and originally had an idea for a possible sequel. I know, a sequel to a story that is only halfway through its first, rough draft? Not only halfway through its initial stages but also a project that is right now #4 on my list of four projects? How presumptuous!

But that is the way I write. While I have a focus, I tend to jump around.

But as I developed that idea in my head and furthered it today it was apparent that the good ideas I was coming up with did not really fit into that world. So I have decided to open a new project which will be called “Wyvern Lord“. I have a couple pages of notes that I will be expanding and working from as I get this new project underway.

I will be updating the project page over the next couple days.

Changing POV At End Of Novel: Under The Darkened Moon

October 18, 2011 Leave a comment

I have decided for the epilogue of my novel, Under the Darkened Moon, to switch POVs. This is, of course, still a rough draft but I think it makes sense even though the entire novel has been 3rd person limited from the viewpoint of the main character to this point.

I want to pull back and go 3rd person omniscient to reveal things that are ok to reveal now that the story is over. Particularly the thoughts of the novel’s secondary character more in depth as well as putting the reader in the mind of a character who has been mentioned and referenced but never introduced until now and who has good reason to be introduced.

I wouldn’t consider changing POVs like this within the novel proper and suddenly but for the postscript, I think it will be ok and add to the story.

Getting Ahead of Myself

July 30, 2011 Leave a comment

I am still actually writing the full length novel hoping a short story presents itself. I have two ideas so far on that front from what I have written. Again, there are lots of back stories that could make good short stories but I have to be interested in telling them first and foremost. Only two are interesting to me right now.

It is funny how writing fiction seems to work for me. My mind is about 10 chapters ahead of my fingers. I even already have and ending, which seems logical and sound, flushed out. This is at times a little confusing though because sometimes the story starts to wander away from that ending. By knowing the general ending it helps me keep the story on track I suppose.

What I am doing is keeping notes on where I want the story to go with each successive chapter. Some days I just do not feel like writing but feel like only putting down ideas. And it all seems logical at the time. But when I sit down to actually flush out the notes into actual chapters things are working out a lot differently. But usually better at the time of actually writing it. Some plot lines get dropped all together because while they looked good at the time simply did not actually further the story as they were flushed out into the first draft. Or while they may have furthered the story, they would have added pages and pages and pages of story that when I thought about it were not going to actually add anything to the story.

Of course the whole story is still a rough draft.

Things appear to be happening slower in the story than I have outlined which helps too meaning I need less of these plot points to get from start to finish and make a full length novel. It just seems that I have to add dialogue and scenes to make the progression from plot point to plot point more logical. So that is what I am doing. There will always be hang ups though.

Then of course there are the ah-crap moments where when what I outlined just does not actually work out to be the way things have to happen.

Oh well.

Up to 87,000 words now in the story that I did not set out to write. Again, all very rough of course.

Writing a prologue

July 25, 2011 Leave a comment

I have written a couple thousand more words to my story over the weekend. I’ve started to get into the meat of things at this point where the main character is well on his journey.

While I have at times thrown in some backstory as conversations between characters allow I am left wondering if the entire setting of the story and the overarching world conflict is well enough defined to someone who might be reading this story. To me things are well understood, but I am the writer and not a typical reader. I understand that this is just a first, rough draft but I want to be sure everything makes sense to the reader. I have gone back through much of what I have written looking for places to expound but do not see many if any.

Thus I have opted to go back and write a prologue to the story. Since my setting is a robust world and the story is being told from a limited third person POV (as of right now) prejudices and perceptions of the main character simply prevent major knowledge of the world’s past from being known or seen through untainted opinions.

This prologue may not work out but I am going to try it. It may even get looped into the main body of the story later on. I don’t have an aversion to prologues but I know some authors and readers do for their own reasons. I have seen prologues that work and ones that do no.

I plan on using a standard prologue which is to give background and knowledge to the reader about things that happened before the main story and before the characters of the story were even born. I do not plan on using it to introduce the main or sub characters of the story as a sort of Chapter 1.

Still looking for the short story I set out to write though. Until that crops up I plan on plugging ahead with this longer work.