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Somnolence, Trace, WIP Wednesday, Writing

Another WIP Wednesday

We are hard at work on TRACE. I’m 10 chapters in on the second draft which means I should be done by the end of the month if not a little sooner.

My process is to do the first draft, print it out and then rewrite it all over again in a new document with new content, cutting out excess, so it’s damn near close to what I want minus editing and beta feedback. Trust me to misspell the word shudder once in every book and for it to get through editing. It ALWAYS happens. Generally, it’s caught by an ARC reader when it’s too late. But it will be fixed in future editions when they are eventually published.

One of my WIP image today shows a snippet of two things: I can’t use a comma correctly and Bri was making changes back in 1969 the other night. I thought it was hilarious and I included it. There is another image inside this post with a TRACE WIP snippet so click to read more!


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Writing

Working on the Second Draft of Trace

I started working on Trace’s second draft yesterday. I’ve been fighting with one of my office helpers for real estate on the manuscript. This one is a real PITA and writing dirty scenes with an actual pussy on the paper is no assistance at all.


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Raiden, Somnolence, Teaser Tuesday, Trace, WIP Wednesday, Writing

WIP Wednesday with a Teaser Tuesday stuck in

So I’m working on Trace and just finished the rough draft this morning. Yay!

It was really a challenge because I’ve been sick for a week. I’ve luckily caught neither COVID or strep, but I feel pretty wretched. I’ve been sleeping a lot and when not sleeping I’m eating and trying to stay awake and do my Duolingo–which let me tell you is dificíl with a sore throat and no voice. But I persisted and completed Trace and now I can take a nap after I do this post.

So I don’t know if I was talking about raccoons or ragoons but one of these things is not like the other.


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Wishcraft, Writing

Behind the Scenes: Working on Wishcraft!

I have the bulk of Wishcraft, book 2 of PTB written. I read it last week and it made me laugh out loud and cry. There is one part that will definitely require tissues.

Yesterday I made the outline so Bri could see where the story was going and help me stay on track, and did the second draft on chapter one. I really am proud of Wishcraft. If anything, it is better than The Dream Keepers, and that is saying something, because I’m happy with how TDK turned out–even if I did think it was an extra needy baby in the end. 😜

This morning I woke up at five a.m. and started on chapter two. It’s a downer and I wanted to get it out of the way. I have a busy day, but before the end of the day I should be able to do chapter three too.

How do I write a second draft?

It sounds crazy and time consuming, but I do a hardcopy of the original and on a new Google document, I rewrite it. I have a guideline of the second book but it allows me to expand or edit as I see fit. AND THIS BOOK, AS ORIGINALLY WRITTEN, IS IN THE WRONG TENSE!

Augh. So, I’m rewriting it in the correct tense.

I make new Google documents for each chapter, and then download each one as I go, in case something happens, I have it backed up. I have written chapters before that I lost, and nothing is more heartbreaking than pouring your heart out and losing it to knuckleheadedness.

How much do I write a day?

When I’m writing a new story, I write between 3k and 4k words a day. And that is how authors tend to measure their books, not in pages, but words.

On a rewrite, like I’m doing with Wishcraft, I tend to use a pace program. I have, in the past, written primarily during NaNoWriMo events and the goal is to write 50k words in 30 days. This time, I’m using Pacemaker Planner. It works basically the same way as WriMo, but I don’t get an award at the end of it. Well, I get a book. 😂🤣

I gave myself 31 days to write 65k words. 65k isn’t a long novel and by the time Bri reads it and has me expand on things and redraft, the novel will probably be closer to 80k. The outline is almost ten more chapters than the first book. It’s possible that this book will just flow and I’ll write more than my goal to start with.

Pacemaker has me set up to write roughly 2,400 words a day and half that, 1,200 words, on weekends. I like to spend time with my husband, so the lighter schedule then is a big help.

How do I edit?

I think each author has a method and most people probably finish the book and hand it off to their editor. Bri and I have a different way of doing things. I write five or, sometimes, ten chapters, and hand them off to her to edit. I asked her to read for content the first pass this time.

Content editing is when you are reading to make sure the events are continuous, make sense, and that the plot doesn’t have any holes. My book is character driven–it means that this book in particular is mainly about the characters and the plot itself is the second priority.

Why?

Because writing this trilogy allows me to stretch out the plot and it story arcs, plays out, over the three books. You get to focus on the characters. And trust me, Michaela is a hoot and you want more of her.

I will compile the chapters I write and put them together in one document for Bri. She and I edit separately or in tandem, when we can, and we talk about my choices or argue over dialogue. Michaela drops her prepositions all the time and that is purposeful. It drives Bri nuts.

How do you know the book is complete?

It’s easy when I’ve a first draft, like now, because I can read through it and make an outline.

It’s an altogether different thing when I am writing a WIP (work in progress) that is fresh. Most books have the crux or crisis happen between 60-70% of the story. Then, your resolution is the last third-ish of the book. So when I’m writing, I use word count, plot, and common sense to determine where that 60-70% is. Then I work on the resolution.

A long reaching story arc like The Power That Be series works differently than all that. The fact that I have the chance to write the story up to the end and dangle a cliffy there for readers, means that the 60-70% happens in the third book. I get to do whatever resolution I want and leave readers hanging in book one and two as long as book three provides a resolution.

Book three is a pile of poo. It’s a meandering story that needs to be wrangled, outlined, edited and then redrafted. There is gold in it but it’s far from ready, despite me knowing what happens in that book.

So, there is some ‘behind the scenes’ on writing book two and some How-To on the writing process in general. I really hope that it inspires someone to write. You don’t need to be a Stephen King or Jane Austin to write a good book. All you need to do is have some ideas, time, methodology, and you have to write.

You can do it.

Please check out the pre-order on The Dream Keepers.

Look to also see it go up on Booksprout and BookSiren in the future. And sign up for my cover reveal and book tour.

Cover reveal with Enticing Journey will be 13 September.
Book tour with Xpresso Tours will be 25 October – 05 November.

The Dream Keepers, Writing

Behind the Scenes: Formatting

I have one thing to say about formatting your book.

God bless your heart if you can do it.

So, today was a migraine of a morning. Bri and I spent the late morning and early afternoon tandem editing the last of the book. Then we compiled it. We tried to get it appropriately formatted, but what she was seeing and what I saw didn’t match.

What in the butt, dude!? We were looking at the same document on the same program, on the same type of computers. Hers showed it being off by a line. When I exported it as a PDF, sure enough, it was off by a line! I couldn’t even see it to fix it!

It was a conspiracy to see my brain leak out my eyeball, as migraines try to do.

So, then we had a little fun because I got to teach Bri how to export to .ePub and convert to .mobi. Of course, this was to put the book on our Kindles, where we found that the formatting was balls.

Bri, who I called a fancy devil earlier today, had to do a ton of convo juggling and info wrangling to find us some formatting info. And amongst this, we found out we didn’t need to do ISBN and Copyright the way we were going to do them.

We are so in the weeds on this first book. I swear to you, if it weren’t for Bri, I’d have lost my mind already.

So then we spent two hours researching book formatting services.

I still have to read the book tonight to do the last pass on it. I can’t tell you how spoiled this book baby is! It has all this attention and coddling. It better grow up to be successful.

It’s 21:35, I do 24 hour time in my house, it’s 9:35 for you civvies, and I just had to start pulling together everything we’d need for our book formatting. And when I went to purchase the copyright, the US Copyright online registration was offline. I don’t need this. Bri already has a freaking ulcer–she doesn’t need another one, and me not getting copyright done will give her one!

Did I mention that formatting a book requires the stuff that goes, you know… inside the book???

It might be the seven cups of coffee I drank today. Or the migraine that never went away. The fact that the only thing I ate today was a PB&J and some spaghetti sauce, not together. Maybe it’s that I’m overtired. I really want to see the backend of this book today. I’m ready to start writing book two.

But before that… I want a shower, more Excedrin, and would it be too much to ask for some In-n-Out? I’d die or kill for some fries right now.

The Dream Keepers, Writing

Behind the Scenes: Read-Through and Editing

The Dream Keepers
Lovey

Good afternoon everyone! A little Behind the Scenes diary entry for you. 

Bri and I are delaying a little since the read-through has proved to wave some red flags our way. We are eight weeks out from book launch and need to edit the book again and do another read-through as soon as we are done to move to copyright and ISBN. This means we are juggling some cats. 

Not real cats, no, the real cat was helping me with my reading today. 

This is Lovey. She’s really a sixteen-pound paperweight. She eats my binding, my red pen, and drools on the hard copy. I love her, and she’s an excellent editor.

Now for the next step. 

Coffee. 

Who cares that it’s afternoon, right? Sleep is for the weak.

The Dream Keepers, Writing

Behind the Scenes: Writing, Editing, and Drafting

Hello! 

Welcome to the ‘Behind the Scenes’ of my book writing and publishing journey. Today I’m going to talk a little about the final draft read… cry, cry, cry. 

It’s not going the way I’d hoped. 

First of all, this is the 4th trip through this with Bri and easily the 8th draft overall. I wrote the book for NaNoWriMo in 2014. The Dream Keepers is a very well-loved story. When I decided to publish it, I printed out my last copy of the manuscript and rewrote a whole new draft into the Scrivener application. I then would export the files and import them to Google Docs and compile them for Bri. Bri and my friend Raylene read my ‘beta’ file. I took all their comments and notes and made them on a physical draft. I then posted them to Bri’s manuscript and the Scrivener one.

Why was I making extra work for myself? I don’t know yet. We will see how Scrivener works out to determine if it is worth it or not, okay!?

So, Bri and I went through the copy twice more, and then we recompiled it for this final proof. Which I again made a physical copy. 

I stress writers to do two things: 

  1. Read your book out loud or have someone read it to you if you have the luxury.
  2. Create a physical copy you can read to see what it looks like and make notes on that copy. I can’t tell you how different a physical copy looks compared to a digital one.

So, why am I crying? 

Because we might as well be looking at this from the beta version for all the things I see format-wise and content-wise that are wrong. It’s heartbreaking and deadline threatening since we need the final copy no later than the 16th, which probably means one more read-through, making it late.

Why, oh, why?

I guess this is just because Bri and I are being very thorough. We don’t want to publish rubbish. I want to put the best I can out there for people to read. I don’t want anyone to read and review my book and leave a comment saying, ‘this wasn’t worth the money because the grammar and punctuation were a mess.’ I worked very hard on The Dream Keepers and I want it to reflect that.

So, this time it is me reading my book like it’s the first time I’m looking at it, after reading it at least twenty times before. I have notes to droplines to a new paragraph. Notes to explain terminology that seems unusual. Notes to move apostrophes and correct tenses. And

notes to ask Bri why I am using tenses in some places that seem antithetical. 

None of this includes Bri’s comments! 

Wah, wah, wah. 

All I want to do at this point is burn it and start over.

That said, I’m looking for ARC readers and bloggers, and bookstagrammers interested in signing up for my book tours. I will have a 100% readable product ready for release. 😁 

Here is the sign-up for the book tour with Enticing Journey. https://forms.gle/Lwidgprz8fEwzTqH8

The Dream Keepers, Writing

Worlds! It’s Happening.

Bri and I are very excited because we are getting into the final ten weeks before the release! I keep having bouts of nervousness when it strikes me. I mean, I’m living the dream. I’m publishing a book. I thought it would be fun to do a little ‘diary’ of the last stage of writing a book. So check out here, my Facebook, and my Instagram to follow the last weeks in the process.

Now for today.

Bri, my PA (pronounced PERSONAL GODDESS), contacted book tour companies today and made arrangements for the release. I worked on edits, images, book info sheets, Gabe’s Rule List, and social media. Bri then double-checked my crap to be sure I wasn’t a complete eff-up.

Bri’s my editor, as well as my PA, and she really loathes that I unnecessarily capitalize everything after commas. 😁

Tomorrow, I will need to edit five more chapters. I need to have all the edits done by next Tuesday so the book can be recompiled for the final read by Bri. I keep joking that the book is starting to look like plain tofu since I’ve read it so much. I don’t think I wrote a boring or tasteless book! But it’s starting to feel a little like I’ve eaten it every day for the last few months.

So that is my first report! Tomorrow, I will post to another platform with an update. I think it will be Facebook!