Since starting this blog, I’ve been unsure of the direction, but as I have decided to attempt to write, and have ready to submit, by the end of the year, I’m going to blog each step of my new-found process, under the Novel in a Year category tag. If you read this post first, it’ll all make more sense! I hope you’ll find it interesting and/or helpful 🙂
And now, for today’s update:
As planned, I read my draft with the eyes of a beta-reader. When I beta for someone, I use the Comments on Word, and I hope I make helpful comments as well as highlight the really good stuff. I know I let a little sarcasm slip in too. I pretended I was reading someone else’s work, and acted accordingly.
It took me six days to complete the read-through, and then act on the easily sorted issues. A lot of my comments simply said delete or unnecessary, which is pretty self-explanatory. Some of them were paragraphs that I could slot into the work at the appropriate point, and some will be longer and harder to solve. There’s a timeline problem relatively early on, a rather large omission of someone’s reaction to a particular event and a whole lot of underwriting practically all the way through.
To be honest, the underwriting is a lifelong problem, so that wasn’t a shock!
Here are a few of the comments I’ve made:
Remember how hard this was to get the right reveal here? Well, it hasn’t worked. Try again
This all needs to be re-written… you know that glazed over look you get when you read something hideously boring… yeah, that
So they’re not going to talk about last night? Jo tried to murder a painting, and he’s okay with that?
Really? We’re smiling at hats, are we? Why not at the coffee, or that mop in the corner?
My next task is to print out the manuscript and mark up where the deeper changes need to be made, where a couple of chapters need to be moved, and to write new sections so that the other changes make sense. I can’t wait to get my fountain pen out and jot notes all over the pages!
Once again, I’ll be using the NaNoWriMo site and giving myself four weeks to complete this part. I might even work out all the stages for the rest of the year, so I’m not doing quite so much guessing about the deadlines I should be imposing.
How nice are you to yourself when you read your own work?
How long does it take you to write a book?
How many drafts do you take? (My personal best is somewhere in the 20s!)