Agent/Publisher Search, Writer's Life

Pre-publishing Check List

I’m almost done editing my novel for the last time. (I know, I’ve been saying that for a long time now, but I mean it this time). So what should I be doing while my cover artist is working her magic? 

I’ve got a list of things that I need to do before I got publish, but I just want to make sure that I’m not forgetting anything. 

  1. Get a cover. I’m working on that. 
  2. Write a synopsis. I’m working on this too.
  3. Set up a newsletter. I’m not sure about this. Is it necessary?
  4. Update blog/Facebook page with my pen name. I’ll be doing this in the next couple days/weeks.
  5. Set up Twitter account. I’ve done this, and once I change my name here I’ll let you know what it is.
  6. Advertise/Promote. I’ll work on this once I have a cover.

What am I forgetting? I’m sure there’s something.

Writing and Editing

Update 

A couple things. First, hubby and I got a cat/ghost writer. She’s helped me twice so far. And we’ll be cranking out some more words today.

Second, I only have 37 pages to final edit. I’m sticking with this as being the last time, so hopefully all the misspelled words and missing quotation marks were caught.

I’m giving myself until September first to finish my novel. I’m sick of editing it and I need to finish it soon, so I can publish it in November. That will hopefully give my cover artist enough time to design something for me.

September first is 21 days away. That should be more than enough time to finish it. As a reward for if I finish before then, I get to go test drive my purple jeep. (It isn’t really mine, obviously, but one day, it will be).

Writer Problems

Villain’s Point of View

A while back, when my novel was a baby, I thought about having some sections of it be in my villain’s point of view. I squashed that idea thinking that it would take away from the story/give away too much too fast. But then, a few weeks ago, my cover artist suggested it. So now I’m revisiting that option. I think it would/could be fun to write more with her narrating.

I already have this in my two main characters’ points of view, so I’m not sure if I want to add a third narrator. I’m the type of reader who doesn’t like having to keep many storylines straight in my head, so it makes sense that I wouldn’t want to do that to my readers. Three characters to follow isn’t too many is it?

I also have my prologue and epilogue in my villain’s POV and I don’t want to take away from that. 

However, I have a lot of room to play around with. My novel is currently sitting at ~57,000 words and I would like it to be longer. But not at the expense of taking away from/bogging down the current story. Does that make sense?

What is a writer to do?! Maybe add a chapter(?) in the middle just in her view? Just scratch the idea entirely and go with my initial thought process? 

Writing and Editing

Editing

I finally have my prologue the way I like it. I think. I wound up cutting roughly 5,000 words. Yikes. I think it works better now though, so I’m ok with the loss. And by doing so, I open up a possible prequel opportunity. I’m not completely sold on the idea, but at least it’s there if I want to.

Now I get to move on to the easy part of the final edit so hopefully it will be a breeze. I just have a few typos that need to be fixed, along with a few plot holes that were supposed to have been taken care of.

I’m on vacation this week (it needs to slow down, it’s already Tuesday), so I have all the time in the world between fishing, swimming, and spending time with our families to work on this. I’m hoping to finish again this week so I can keep my publication date. I need to give my cover artist time to work her magic, so the sooner I finish the better.

Books and Such

Vacation Reads 

As of a few days ago I was between books. I finished Doctor Sleep by Stephen King and I loved it. I think it’s my second favorite of his. (The first being the Stand). I don’t want to go into this too much right now because we read it for book club and we haven’t met yet. Maybe a week from Monday I’ll post a review.

Anyway, I was between books, which normally isn’t a probelm, but starting next Friday night, hubby and I are on a much needed vacation amd I had already decided what  to read. The two books I’m bringing with me are Harry Potter and the Cursed Child and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, by JK Rowling. Well, I couldn’t go a whole week without reading, and I couldn’t justify starting a new book for a week just to put it down while we go away, so I started The Cursed Child. 

I just finished Act 1, and I’m not sure how I feel about it. I do like the characters and the premise, I’m just not sure if I like what the characters are doing. I will finish this one either way, and then I’ll give you my full review of it.

Without giving any spoilers, how did you like any of the books mentioned? 

Uncategorized

My Two Introductions

Here are two of my new introductions. Please let me know what you like or don’t like. I’m thinking about combining elements of both.

***

I’m bored. Why couldn’t that witch get me out of here like she promised? At least she was able to help me talk again. That took way to long thinking back on it. At least she gave me this gorgeous ring before I killed her. Leila looked down at her right hand and gazed at the ring. It was gold with a pale blue stone in the center. This will come in handy I think. She smiled wickedly. Yes, I can think of many uses for this.

If only that finicky little man hadn’t put this stupid curtain in front of me. How am I supposed to remain entertained if I can’t see anything? Just because that man died…Leila heard voices.

“Just do it, Jimmy,” a man’s voice said.

“But, what about the rumors, Ken?”

What rumors? Leila wondered.

“They’re just rumors.”

“I don’t know. Don’t you remember that security guard?”

“He probably just had a heart attack. Now are you going to do it or not?”

Come on, Jimmy. You know you want to open the curtain.

“You’ll be a legend in the school.”

“If I survive.”

“What could go wrong?”

Absolutely nothing. I won’t hurt you.

“I just told you.”

“But think about what could go right,” Ken said. “You would be the talk of the school. All the girls will want to date you.”

“I don’t want all the girls,” Jimmy began.

“Ok, fine. But Samantha is sure to notice you too.”

Yes, think about the glory and all the women.

“I don’t know,” Jimmy hesitated.

“If you don’t, the whole school will think you’re a chicken. We can’t have the school thinking that about the starting quarter back.”

“The whole school won’t know anything if you don’t tell them,” Jimmy replied.

He won’t be able to help it.

“Just, do it and get it over with. Pretend it’s a band-aid.”

“Fine.”

Goody. This will be fun. Leila smoothed her gown out, and sat in her chair. She smiled sweetly and waited.

Leila saw the two boys for the first time.  They were muscular, but looked to be about seventeen or eighteen. This will be easier than I thought.

“See, Jimmy. You had nothing to worry about. It’s just a girl.”

“She’s awful pretty,” Jimmy said, more to himself.

I like you. Leila thought.

“Can we go now?” Jimmy asked.

What? No.

“Yeah, just close the curtain up again,” Ken said.

***

I can’t believe that witch messed up a simple release spell. How hard would it have been to let me go? And if that disappointment hadn’t been bad enough, she had to go and make matters worse. I knew I should have used an older witch. What was I thinking using a little girl? I won’t make that mistake twice. At least she was of some help before I killed her. Next time I’ll find someone older. She’ll have to be easily manipulated though.

At least the girl was able to help me find my voice again. That took longer than it should have. Now if I only had someone to talk to. That finicky little man is going to regret putting this curtain in front of me. Just because that man died. How was I supposed to know that he would put up a fight? I just wanted some company. And now I’m not going to get any. Once I get out of this painting.

Leila froze. She thought she heard voices. This could be my chance. She waited and listened.

“Come on, Jimmy, It’s can’t be that hard.”

“You’ve heard the rumors, Ken,” Jimmy said reluctantly.

What rumors?

“That’s all the more reason to do it,” Ken replied.

“I don’t know,” Jimmy said.

“The whole school is depending on you,” a girl spoke up.

What is she doing here?

“Why does it have to be me?”

“Because you’re the varsity quarter back and your masculinity has been challenged.”

“Don’t you want to be remembered as the kid who took on the rumored phantom painting?”

“No, not really.”

“So you want your reputation to be destroyed, Jimmy?”

Listen to your friends, Jimmy.

“If you won’t do it for yourself, then do it to impress Samantha,” the girl said.

“Assuming I live, she still wouldn’t know I exist, Becky,” Jimmy said.

“You’ll be the quarter back that conquered the phantom,” Becky replied. “The whole school will notice you.”

“I still don’t know.”

“If you don’t do this, then I’ll tell the whole school that you were afraid of a painting,” Ken said. “You’ll be the laughing stock and your senior year will be ruined.”

Yes, Jimmy. I won’t hurt you. Much.

“Just pretend the curtain is like a band-aid, and rip it off quickly.”

Writer's Life

Final Draft…Again…For Real…I Hope

Does this happen to anyone else? You have a final version that you’re relatively happy with so you give it to people to read and then they give you feedback to make it even better. So then you go and make a final folder on your laptop, you fix the novel and then you give it to other people. And then more feedback. Does thisbcucle ever end?!

I met with my cover artist today, and it was a productive meeting. We didn’t actually talk about my cover though. At least not in very much detail. I told her how big I wanted it and what two colors to play around with. And on my way home I thought of a font that I want her to use…I should probably tell her that.

Instead we talked about changes in my novel that probably should be made, or at least thought about. 
So it’s back to the laptop again. Sigh. Oh well, we actually came up with some brilliant ideas that I’m looking forward to writing. One of them being my prologue. (I know what you’re thinking about a prologue, but it’s necessary and it’s going to tie in with my epilogue and maybe a few sections throughout, I haven’t quite decided yet). I basically get to rewrite it again. But it will actually work out better because then I get to write a novella that flushes out my current prologue. (I don’t want to give away too much so hopefully that wasn’t confusing.)

She also solved several of my other issues that my husband and I couldn’t figure out how to fix. In short, my cover artist is amazing.

Well, I’m off to decipher my notes. 

Writer Problems, Writer's Life

Day Two of the New Rule

As you recall, I started a new rule yesterday. And yesterday it worked. I got my words in and then I able to check Facebook whenever I wanted. and it felt great to have my writing done early in the day. And if I was going to pick a day to cheat, yesterday would have been an easy one. I was in for 4 am at my other job. So I could have very easily made the excuse/promise that I would write later. But I didn’t. I spent the time before I punched in reading. 

Today is proving to be a challenge. I’ve got a lot of life things on my mind and I’m having a hard time wanting to crank out 500 words. In the meantime, Facebook is looking at me with pitiful eyes. But, I’m trying to follow the rule and not look at it. So far, I haven’t. Pinterest on the other hand…let’s just say I’m taking baby steps and eliminating one distraction at a time.

I know I shouldn’t wait for inspiration, desire, etc to hit, but I’m having a hard time focusing. My muse is distracted with something else. Any suggestions for tempting her to come back? Maybe coffee would help?

On a side note, my cover artist finished reading my 1st book, and she and I are getting together next Monday to discuss what I want her to do. I should probably figure that out soon. I’ve got a rough idea, and by rough I mean I know what colors I want the background and title to be.

Well, I should get back to staring at my notebook and trying to get some words written. 

Writer's Life

New Rule

I need to write consistently, every day. I haven’t done that since last year. Yikes, I know. So I’m making a new rule.

No Facebook until my words are written. 

If I want to make writing my career, and I do, then I need to start treating it like one. I’ve tried paying myself, coming up with a reward system, just doing it,etc. and nothing has seemed to stick. So starting Monday, June 19, this new rule will take effect. If you see me online ask me to take a picture of my word count and the date. I’m setting it at 500 for right now, hoping to ease into a higher one as the weeks go by. (I’ll let you know on increase days). On that note, I have to get writing.