Maybe it’s naughty but I submitted few pages of another manuscript to our current Writer in Residence over the weekend. This time it was the manuscript I am currently working on, The Twesome Loop. A romance with a touch of erotica and a reincarnation twist. It is two time periods – 2000 and 1874 so the chapters go back and forth between the two. The four main characters in each time period are linked by reincarnation and as you get to know the characters you will come to notice similarities in personality coming through.
My meeting on Sunday with Richard van Camp our current WIR was excellent. He gave me a ‘light bulb’ moment on one of the characters. This will give me a new boost in creating her in a whole different light. Now I need to find the time to revise all the scenes she is present in. An expression he used was to ‘echo’ the characters to entice the reader with the similarities between the modern day and past personalities.
I also submitted the initial draft of the book I am ghost writing to my client for her review. Fingers crossed it will meet with approval!
And – agreed to be a beta-reader for two author friends so the manuscripts are piling up!
I completed this novel – here is my review: Great story with well rounded characters, especially Emma whose bravery inspires.
A story of spirit, love and overcoming fear.
The tension builds with unforeseen twists and turns.
A well written narrative by an artful author, I will certainly be seeking out her other books.
I am now reading:
You don’t always need an outline. Give discovery writing a try.
Do you have a writing tip to share?
What book can you recommend?
Acknowledgement – definition: 1. recognition of the existence or truth of something; 2. an expression of appreciation
It is human nature to want to be acknowledged whether for our day to day activities or, as we are writers, for our narratives. We can toil for days, weeks and years in our solitude, scribbling the next great novel. It is only when we share this work are we acknowledged by our peers and hopefully a wider audience. And that is the scary part! We nurture, refine and revise time and again to make our story ‘perfect’. The life lesson here is another person’s point of view will give us a new perspective, which may or may not be what we were expecting. In truth it is mainly, not. Being so close to the story, its settings and characters is a good thing when we are in creation mode but we need to step back and let it ‘rest’ a while before editing. Fresh eyes and a certain detachment allow us to really ‘see’ the narrative without our mesmerized involvement in the project.
To cushion the blow, read excerpts to your writing group or trusted friends, who you know will be honest with you but not harsh in their review. Bear in mind the genre when you share your work as not everyone will enjoy fantasy, romance or sci-fi. That way you can receive a true reflection of your novel from people who regularly read that particular genre. In many ways you are benefiting from their ‘expertise’. Beta readers are also a good way to receive great feedback.
Acknowledgement may not come as a best seller but understand, if one or two readers read your narrative and enjoy it enough to contact you to say how much they loved it then you have recognition and appreciation. Your words are out in the world for future generations to delight in. That is priceless.
A similar blog post I found this morning – http://glynisrankin.wordpress.com/2013/09/25/wednesday-writer-wisdom-the-beta-reader/
Dross – definition: 1) the waste slag or scum that forms on the surface of molten metal 2) waste or foreign matter : impurity 3) something that is base, trivial or inferior
No matter if you are a new writer or a seasoned one, there are times when we read a paragraph or short excerpt and just despair. It can be the premise, the interaction of characters or just how the scene reads. We’re just not happy with it. Depending on your mind set at that moment, there are a few spur of the moment actions that may occur. Pressing delete is number one for most of us as we berate ourselves for writing such dross. Another is to focus too hard on it and become bogged down, re-writing again and again, usually having the result of making us even angrier and unable to concentrate creatively.
If you are absolutely sure that deleting the passage is the only way, then do it but if not, save the offending article in isolation – may be create a ‘dross’ file? Leave the work and do something else, non-writing related. A walk, a workout, make a cup of tea and read a book for a while, no matter what it is distract your mind. In the terminology of the computer age – reboot your mind. Once you return you can see the article with fresh eyes and if you are lucky a revision will reveal itself.
Another aspect of ‘dross’ thinking is when you have finished a project and second-guess yourself as to its merits. Is it good enough? Will anyone like it? Is my writing worthy of submission to a publisher, a magazine or beta readers? We are uncertain literary beings at the best of times and unfortunately compare ourselves to the ‘greats’. All of us have heard the stories of successful authors receiving many rejections before being ‘found’, such J.K. Rowling, Stephen King and John le Carre. Make yourself feel better just look at this link – http://www.examiner.com/article/30-famous-authors-whose-works-were-rejected-repeatedly-and-sometimes-rudely-by-publishers
There is always a golden phrase or sentence that is worth saving or revising. Juggle the words, mix the sentences around or write it from a different characters perspective. Do not give up hope – your words are precious after all.