Thursday, 21 January 2016

Structural edits and all that jazz

Structural edits and all that jazz..

It has been a busy week for me. I received the structural edit suggestions from my publisher and I have been busy working on them. I have been able to sort out the issues relatively quickly - well all except one which requires more brain cells than I seem to possess at the moment. I think last night at some unearthly hour I finished it but now that the structural edits have been made I need to read through the whole darn manuscript again to make sure it all makes sense and flows.It is only too easy to assume consistency to avoid reading the whole book again, but although I am not someone who usually pays attention to detail etc., I know I need to do this. So tonight the task starts.

One of the structural edits was to change the ending - now when my writing group read the book they said the same thing and I thought -nooooo, I really like the ending the way it is. So I left it and that was the main thing my publishers suggested to change! So after a bit of sulking I came up with an ending I think readers would be happy with...Let's see what the publishers say.

I think that's one of the nice things working with a publishers - being able to bounce ideas off them and getting their feedback- although on saying that if you are self pubbing you can always hire a structural editor to give you their feedback. Personally, I have never done that but I am in the most amazing writing group that critique full manuscripts and they tell you exactly where you are going wrong - as the above example shows!  If you are a budding writer and not in a writing group I would definitely recommend joining one - and not a lovey dovey one - You need a group that keeps it real and points out the flaws in your plot, your 2d characters and generally keeps your feet on the ground!

Most writers I know get fed up with editing and I know that you can only read through your novel so many times until it all becomes so familiar that you can't see the wood from the trees.

Nevertheless, we authors persevere because that is what you have to do as a writer... yes, bring out the world's smallest violin! We are hard done by.

But it's not all doom and gloom. With my edits done and just one final read through before it goes to the line editing stage surely I am half way there already (If they like my structural edits that is). It wont be long before I am revealing the front cover and the release date!

To add to my workload I have also received the front cover proofs for the next Chupplejeep Mystery - The Body in the Bath. I like what JD&J have done but it needs tweaking here and there so I need to get back to them today. I have had some feedback from friends and family and other writers - which always helps. I don't think you can ever make a front cover decision in isolation!

And another thing - not sure if I mentioned this last time I blogged, but I realised the other day that I haven't written anything new since 2014!!! Crazy! So this year I need to start something new. I have an idea for a book which I will let you in on later. The opening scene is written (I wrote this a long time ago) but maybe I'll take it along to my next writing group meet and see what people think.

Anyone embarking on a new writing project? What are your writing goals for 2016? Tweet me @marissadeluna

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