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Panic Attacks and Manuscripts

  • Posted on June 24, 2017 at 1:23 pm

So I have finished the manuscript for Knight of Kuryle. The first draft is entirely done. I’ll be running through several more drafts, of which I’ll explain in a moment, but for now, I am done with it until the 15th of July. Four weeks is a long time to wait, for someone used to working non-stop on their novel. Four weeks is a long time to wait for anything.

I’ve been experiencing an emotional upheaval during this time. It’s only been three days and I’m having more panic attacks than ever before. Just a few minutes ago, I had the largest one yet, where I couldn’t breathe. Luckily, my friend and roommate knows a calm-down method for panic attacks, and was able to help me get it under control. I still feel vulnerable and weak aftewards, however.

Some friends I’ve talked to about it say that it’s possible that there are a lot of feelings tied into the manuscript, and my finishing it has created a void where the manuscript used to be, which is causing the emotional upheaval. I think it’s something simpler. I’m scared.

You see, I’ve done the easy part. I’ve done the part I know how to do. I’ve written the first draft, and completed an entire story. I’ve done that before, and now, I’m in new territory. Now I have to edit. Now I have to polish. Now, I have to tear my beauty apart.

My writing mentor, Chris Votey, has listed a set of steps for my next drafts of the manuscript. They are as follows:

  1. First draft of manuscript
  2. Content edit
  3. Grammarly edit
  4. Ginger edit
  5. Word doc spell checker
  6. Content edit again
  7. Language edit – Looking for overused words and adverbs
  8. ReRead
  9. Chris goes through it
  10. Repeat.

I’m glad he gave me this process so that I could record it. No book I know goes into such detail as to give you exact instructions, so I thought I’d write it down. It’s useful to know what other authors are doing when it comes to editing and writing.

On top of all of this, I am reading and researching for my next project. A regency era romance I’ve named “A Deeper Love”.  Look forward to snippets and deleted scenes in the future! I’m currently reading On Writing Romance by Leigh Michaels in order to figure out how to write this romance properly! As someone who has had little luck in romance herself, this is especially important. ALWAYS RESEARCH NEW GENRES.

Editing is a rewording activity!

  • Posted on May 18, 2016 at 10:42 pm

Forgive the pun, I like to think of myself as punny, occasionally. However, this particular blogpost is in celebration of editing! Specifically, celebration of a friend of mine who has opened an editing department for his publishing company. Since he helped me so greatly during the long, arduous process of drafts two, three, and four of my unpublished novel, “A Knight of Kuryle”, I thought I’d share that experience with those of you who were interested as well!

Now, the obligatory disclaimer. I was asked to write up this review, however, I have not received any services or payment for these words. Everything I say was true before this company ever started business, and I’m sure will continue to be true after I speak it, as well.

With the unpleasant business out of the way, now we can get on to the experience of having Chris Votey edit my works.

First, I would like to state that working with him opened up whole new worlds to my writing. I will admit, I began writing the same way all fandom-obsessed, fresh-out-of-highschool twit does. I started writing REALLY HORRID FANFICTION. Self-insters, authors notes, awful, AWFUL, chew-the-scenery descriptions, and a lack of forsight when it came to my world building that just generally wasn’t acceptable. I had a long way to go, and honestly, I’m surprised Chris stayed with me for as long as he did.

Chris didn’t just help me with moulding my words into something beautiful and sharp. He helped sharpen my mind, showed me new ways of thinking about what it was I was working with, working for, and gave me entirely new perspectives on how and why I should put the words on the paper. It’s thanks to his encouraging words and constant supervision that I was able to come to the conclusion that the book I was writing was not one book, but rather a series. It was thanks to Chris’ hard work at managing my mind that I realized a major plot-point in my book had been glossed over, when it could add so much more depth and beauty to the story.

I will not say that it was a quick or easy process however. I am a prideful woman, and honestly, I found sometimes that we would butt heads. The way Chris explains things can be… difficult to grasp. I found the trick was, like he said, to follow along with what he said, rather than attempting to jump ahead and make my own conclusions. The way he thinks, the way he writes, is very different from the way I think, and I find it has enriched my writing.

Not to mention he has the type of vocabulary that makes a girl breathless. That is to say, he knows so many ways to say so many things. He’s an avid owner of several thesauruses, including both the Positive and Negative Traits thesauruses. Which are extremely helpful when you come to him for help with characterizing a particularly difficult character, the way I had to several times.

All in all, if I had to pay money to get his help with making my works shine, I would scrounge, scrimp and save every penny, if only to have him touch my manuscripts again. I would go without food to do so, without a second thought.

Researching Mystery

  • Posted on August 11, 2014 at 2:35 pm

Today, I have a guest blog published over on Cindy Grigg’s website. We’ve swapped guestblogs, and her post, 9 ways to fix your Stereotyped Character is informative and fun to read! Go take a look at it! Also, take a look at the article, Researching mystery which you can find here:

If you’re curious, here’s the first two paragraphs of the article, for your perusal.

To begin with, I’m not normally a mystery author. To be specific, when I was younger, I only ever wrote fantasy novels, or romance. Now, however, I’m trying my hand at mystery novels, which means quite a bit of strife. I have a natural instinct when it comes to fantasy, so I find it easy to fall into. With Romance, I have my years as a fanfiction writer and fandom roleplayer to fall back on, which can both enhance and detract from my writing. (No one likes reading author’s notes, I’ve since learned.)

I came to mystery as a genre because I love the tense atmosphere. Maybe it’s less mystery and more suspense that I enjoy. But recently, I’ve found that I want a challenge. And the best way to challenge yourself is to write something you’ve never in a million years written before. But how can you write something you’ve never written before? How can you make sure that you don’t slip back into writing what you know? And worst of all, how do you manage to make it a GOOD manuscript when you know nothing about your genre?

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