Revisions, Revisions, Revisions

I am swimming in revisions right now.

I received the latest draft of Knight of Valor back, and it looked like a field of poppies with the amount of red comments on it.

sunset-815270_640
Amount right.

Sad, really, for an eighteenth draft, though most of the comments revolve around letting the hero’s personality shine through and maybe showing a bit more of the broken side of his character.

He, of course, wants no part of that. He wants to be the strong silent type that you can rely on. Which he is, but he’s also been through hell and back and survived. He’s not the naïve and idealistic youth he once was. And that’s okay. Both he and I need to be more comfortable letting some of those broken pieces show through, at least for the reader.

So, yeah, this has been an exhausting rewrite.

But, I will say, the story is better for it. I feel like the changes I am making help better convey Sir Marcus’s character and explain why he is my favorite of all the heroes I have written to date.

revision4
Or the eighteenth

It will probably take me at least the rest of the month, maybe longer, to finish the rewrite. Then, I need to walk away for at least two weeks.

Four would be better so that I can look at the manuscript with fresh eyes.

Okay, all right, sort of fresh eyes. After nineteen revisions, I’m not sure I’ll ever have truly fresh eyes for this piece again.

I have updated my goals in Wunderlist to track the extra revisions I need to put in.

WunderlistMar2019
Not exactly what I wanted to show you, but it’s real.

Yeah.

It’s basically two more months’ worth of work.

And yes, my OCD would really like to call February finished, except it isn’t. There were things in that month to accomplish to launch Knight of Valor in April. Just as there are things in March I was supposed to do to get ready for a book launch as well.

But, you can see if you add the progress of February, March and April together, I am a little father ahead than where I had planned to be this time in mid-March.

I am not sure I can do the extra things needed for Knight of Valor and stay on track with my other writing goals this year. Plus, I still don’t know what else will throw me off schedule.

And that’s okay.

I am making progress. I can see that.

There may be unforeseen things along the journey, but I am still traveling it.

New Years Resolutions 2019

Another New Year’s Resolution post!

res1

I am trying really hard to set realistic goals this year. And I am going to check in on them quarterly.

 

My 2019 Resolutions:

1. Release Two Books This Year

Yes, I know we’d talked about three. But as long as I have a day job, I just don’t see that being realistic. I’d rather put out two books that I’m proud of than three that I think are only okay.

 

2. Write Three First Drafts

I’ve admitted that I spend a lot more time editing than writing, and that’s okay. BUT I need to make sure I always have a fresh supply of material to edit. The longer I spend time editing, the harder actually writing new material becomes. So this still needs to be a focus for me.

 

3. Eat food before it goes bad.

Didn’t see that one coming, did you? Our refrigerator is a black hole, and too often stuff goes in and I don’t find it until it’s sporting a mold colony. By eating what we buy, it saves us money and reduces our environmental footprint. We have a new, smaller, refrigerator. While it may seem counter-intuitive, I am hoping not being able to store as much and seeing more of it will help us achieve this goal.

 

4. Move at Least Three Days a Week

Walking. Biking. Whatever. Three days a week. This is a lot more doable since my office put in a small but very nice gym in the basement for employees. They even put in showers! I have already been working towards this goal, but I am adding it as I want to keep it at the forefront of my thoughts.

 

5. Keep a Food Journal

It’s hard to know what to change in your eating habits until you truly know what you are eating. I have a Fitbit I wear daily. It comes with a tracking program on the same app. I have tried to use it with varying degrees of success. I need to develop the habit of logging food, and that’s what this resolution is all about!

 

How about you? What are your resolutions? Have you started on them? Do you think you’re likely to keep them?

Writing Process: I Figured It Out

After taking a hard if biased look at my current WIP, I figured out what’s been causing the writer’s block.

WritersBlock2.png
But less cute.

You don’t see the antagonist.

At the 45k word point, you still haven’t met him.

I have read a great deal of writing help on making sure you develop your villain. Make them a hero in their own story.

While I know a great deal about the antagonist, everything he has been doing is behind the curtain. It’s something the characters must respond to, but the reader doesn’t see him.

This is partially on purpose as the antagonist doesn’t want you to know it’s him. He wants to stay hidden. He wants you to think it’s someone else, and he’s done a decent job of setting up that person.

Villain
More he loves power. But not too far off.

However, at this point in the story, I really need him to take a more active role. His plans are hanging in the balance. He wouldn’t allow them to fall apart because of inaction.

But, I haven’t shown him yet. It’s hard to do a big reveal when the reader doesn’t know him or anything about him.

At the same time, as a romance story is traditionally only told through the eyes of the hero or heroine, I can’t just jump into his head and show my audience what’s happening.

I need to go back and rework the story. Find a way to show who he is without revealing him.

That means a pretty significant rewrite on a piece of work that isn’t complete.

I try really hard not to do this, but I truly see no way forward. He must step up now and take action.

I suppose I could try the random reveal and then work him back into the story later.

I will ponder both options and see which way has the characters talking to me again.

writers-block-when-your-imaginary-friends-refuse-to-talk-to-24442489