Progress Report

I thought I’d give a quick progress report for where things are in my preparations to launch To Love a Prince.

Butterflies with acid wings keep flitting through my stomach as I write this, so here’s hoping nothing goes awry!

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Now imagine that’s acid on their wings!

1. Cover

I found a cover artist without a six month wait list. I really liked her sample work, and I the butterflies got worse when I saw her first draft. I’ve asked to change a few colors, but I still can’t believe I’ve seen a mock-up cover with my name on it!

 

2. ProWriting Aid

I’ve figured out more about how to make the program work for me. It’s a good program, BUT you still have to be smart about it. There could be things it doesn’t like you must learn to ignore. You are not going to make all of the red flags disappear, which drives my OCD a little crazy. At least I didn’t make them all disappear, and I was still happy with how much stronger my writing was.

3. Figured Out More About Scrivener

Scrivener is another fabulous program I’ve just started learning. It has so much depth and complexity that it can be overwhelming. But, it is a magnificent tool. I own Scrivener for Dummies, but I haven’t been patient enough to work through it. Still, I was able to use the book and Google to figure out how to do some things I want, and I was able to save those things as a custom setting. Nice.

4. Finished running To Love a Prince through Pro Writing Aid. Again.

Once I figured the program out a little more, I re-ran my novel through it. Took some time, but I think it was worth it.

5. Finished a Final Polishing Edit

I’m not sure I will ever be “done”, but I have to let go at some point. I’m hoping this is it.

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More zen than I’ve felt. Ever. But still feels pretty good to be polishing up a final draft.

6. Met with a Pro to Get Help on the Blurb

I know attractive covers get books read. You’re not going to click on a less-than-awesome cover most of the time. I also know blurbs get books read. Once a potential reader has clicked the cover, the blurb has to convince them they want to read it.

No matter how many times I wrote and rewrote the blurb, it was flat at best. Yeah, it told about the story, but it didn’t grip you. I think the help she gave me will result in a much stronger blurb. I’m hoping I can take what I learned and apply it to the next blurb.

Next step is to format the book for ebook and Createspace. I have read tutorials on doing this out of Scrivener, but I am really considering purchasing Vellum. I want the end result to look as professional as possible, especially after all eleven drafts it took to get the story as good as I could.

 Soon I’ll be trying to figure out how to launch a book. If you have any pointers on any of this, either as a writer or a reader, please share them!

Progress Update

Thought I’d share a quick update as to how my quest to get a book on your e-reader is going.

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Truth!

Pro Writing Aid

I bought Pro Writing Aid to do a final polish on what I thought was a tidy manuscript. I figured it would take a few hours to go through and make any changes. Okay, stop laughing.

Yes, I have lots of red errors of doom.

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Yeah, lotta red.

I’m working through them, though after a few chapters, I’m learning I don’t always agree with all of their marks. For example, it tells me the word desire is “corporate”. But I’m a romance author, and this word is common in the genre.

I’m picking which reports work best for me and working through their recommendations, but this has already taken longer than a few hours.

More Edits

As I’m re-reading everything, I’m making changes. I know, but I can’t help myself. As I work on the technical side of my writing, I also find myself rewriting descriptions to make things flow better, revamping dialogue and the like.

I’ve been working on this novel for two years, and I can still find things to change. I’m starting to worry it’ll never be done.

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Starting to feel like this is me.

Cover Artist

I do not have talent with drawing or photo-manipulation, and I know we all judge a book by its cover. So back in August, I reserved a spot with a cover artist I really like for late 2017 or early 2018. She recently said she could start working on mine in February, so I’m hoping her schedule sticks.

My goal is to work with the same artist for all of the books I’m writing so my covers have a consistent look. As you can see from my works in progress, I have a few coming.

If this cover goes well, I’m hoping to use her again.

Editor?

Given everything that Pro Writing Aid has unearthed about my writing, I am seriously considering an editor. I have learned the lesson about compound sentences needing a comma, and that shows in Pro Writing Aid, but I’m still not sure what a hidden verb is.

While I don’t think the book will ever earn back what I pay for an editor, the expense may still be worth it if I learn something from the process that I can apply to future novels. This means finding a solid editor that doesn’t mind romance writing, and who’ll take the work even at mac and cheese prices. So if you know of any, please let me know!

New Story

After having a discussion with my writing group, I decided to start a new work amidst all of these revisions so I don’t lose the ability (and desire) to create something new. Rewriting is important, but so is creating.

 My goal is still to release To Love a Prince by the end of June 2018. Yes, I’m putting that out there. I’d like to have the next book ready by January 2019, but that’s still in the early stages of revision. Chronologically, it comes after To Love a Prince, but I wrote three other books before that one. I have some catching up to do if I’m going to be ready by then!