Posts Tagged ‘revisions’

Space Case

 

I’m currently working on a whiz-bang space opera adventure story. I’d say it has a variety of inspirations, though it most heavily reminds me of Firefly + the seamier side of Star Wars Indiana Jones in space. Or something like that. I’ve probably heavily oversold the idea at this point. I really don’t care because it’s so much fun to write!

The weird part is that I originally developed this concept within a shared setting. So now I’m doing a lot of revision, removing intellectual property that doesn’t belong to me and having a great time coming up with new world-building material to fill in the gaps. I’m loving the story more than ever because now it’s truly mine. If I want to use jump drives and a form of subspace communication, I can! If I feel like painting a backdrop of fallen empires and space cowboys, that works. And if I want to include espers, alien pets, and bug-eyed monsters, that just makes it more fun.

Hopefully I’ll have these revision wrapped up soon so I can move on to the part of this process I dread the most: The Query.

Wish me luck!

 

Slogging Through Faerieland

Photo by bogenfreund, used under Creative Commons license.

Photo by bogenfreund, used under Creative Commons license.

So how is everyone else faring in this post-Mayan-Apocalypse world? I have to say I’m pretty pleased the world didn’t end in December. The holidays were good to me, aside from the inevitable fifteen pounds I gained from “things I really shouldn’t eat but family made them, so I’ll just have a taste.” Oh, and immediately after New Year’s everyone in our family got sick. That made it a tad difficult to get back on the work-out wagon, but there’s always tomorrow. Or next month. Pass the Girl Scout cookies.

In the meantime, I’m starting over on my revisions with Palace of Bone. I’ve started the “How To Revise Your Novel” course by author Holly Lisle, and while the process is difficult for me (hello analytical brain, nice to know you’re still in there) it makes so much more sense than what I was doing, which basically amounted to agonizing over individual word choices while covering my ears and yelling “LA LA LA, I can’t hear you!” at the glaring plot holes and inconsistencies.

There’s something about reading your manuscript on paper that makes it look more real. Suddenly I can’t just wipe out an embarrassing typo with two clicks of the mouse. Nor can I delete the three sentences of redundant dialogue that make my protagonist sound like a babbling idiot and blithely pretend I never wrote that drivel in the first place. I have to face my drivel. It’s humbling, and it’s hard to get through it without wanting to give up.

I have faith that the story will emerge from this process stronger and better. Or, at the very least, I will have learned a few things about crafting a story without plot holes you could drive a Mack truck through. Hopefully. Wish me luck, won’t you?

Or send cookies.

Writing Goals:

  • Complete revision on Palace of Bone by the end of June 2013
  • Rework unnamed Earth Warden story for submission by Feb 28
  • Finish draft of “To Eat Dragon” by March 10?
  • Attend Dreamin’ in Dallas Conference March 29 – 30
  • Re-do outline for “Dancer” story, still not working

Goodbye, Summer!

Photo: Running With Seagulls by Ed Schipul

Photo by Ed Schipul, used under Creative Commons License

I know it’s still actually summer. And for large swathes of the country, it’s even still summer vacation. Not here, baby! Yeehaw!

L went back to school on Monday, M is in preschool three days a week, and all the crazy running-around-to-visit-family is behind us for a while. Not that I don’t love visiting. It just plays merry hell with any attempt at scheduling, routine, and writing.

This has left me a little depressed, to be honest. I feel like I’m falling behind (weird, since I have no deadlines as such). There’s a sort of pressure that builds up inside when I’m not actively working on anything, and it tends to come out as…crazy. Yeah. So, time to let off some steam!

So, with that in mind, here are my goals for September:

  • Finish revisions on unnamed Bell Hunter story.
  • Complete current revision pass on Palace of Bone through at least chapter 10.
  • Rough draft of “dancer” story.
  • Use more unordered lists on the blog because I love those cute little spirals!

Seriously?

Yesterday, I asked my brain to get serious about this whole “editing and revising” thing we’re supposed to be doing. Instead, my brain flashed a shiny new 4000 word short story at me.

So we went with that. Now I have two things to edit and revise. I ask you, brain, what the hell was the point of that little detour, hmm?

Still, it did let me work out some world building and details for a character who’s been kicking around the back of my head for a while. Once my brain has recovered from its current puddingy consistency (don’t ask), I’ll write up a bit about Bell. I think you’re going to like her.

Well, I like her, anyway. That’s good enough for now.

WTB: +5 Shears of Editing, PST

Yeah, I totally geeked out on the title there, sorry. Still, some +5 Shears of Editing would come in really handy right about now.

This particular novel wanted to be Young Adult, whatever I thought about that plan (I’m actually quite enjoying it). The average length on a YA novel tends to be on the lower. I’ve seen estimates ranging from 40,000 to 80,000 words with the caveat that only books with speculative fiction elements should be at the higher end of that range.

When I pitched this at Desert Dreams 2012, I couldn’t remember my exact word count after the latest revisions. I guesstimated that it was around 90,000 words–too high, but not ridiculously outside the realm of possibility, especially for fantasy.

Imagine my surprise when I finally sat down to work on further revisions this week and saw the actual word count: 94,000. Whoopsie!

Thankfully I already had plans to axe a couple of scenes. That brought me down to about 90,000 words yesterday. Today I condensed three more scenes, so I was feeling pretty good about my progress. Then I checked my current word count: 90,500.

I’ll be damned if the thing is getting shorter, but it’s definitely getting better.