The Great and Terrible Summertime Slump


It's happened, I hit the wall. Thankfully that's figuratively, but still, the roll has stopped, the pen is out of ink, there's no paper in the printer, my notebook is full. Well, the last one is actually "my notebook is empty," because if it were full, there wouldn't be any problems.

The muse was there, and then she left, but The Captain is so close to being done and here's hoping that Kit and Ella will move it along already.

It wouldn't be so bad, but the editing is really what's kicking my butt right now. A strange thing happens when you sit back down at the screen and say, "Oh, Hey, I should revise this"...everything stops. It suddenly becomes very important that you go to that Medieval Faire that your friend's friend's cousin's aunt told him-her-you about (for research purposes, obviously). And you just HAVE to take that impromptu trip to wherever because you need to pick up God only knows what why when and how.

Editing is a bitch. I think that's the main reason for excuse after excuse of what you have to do that is more important than what you're supposed to be doing. It's not so much the actually having a deadline, because deadlines can be really helpful, but rather the "killing your darlings" thing. For instance, I have Captain open in a screen right behind my internet browser. I can see the stupid WORD dialogue box with its stupid flashing cursor for "type here" just out of my periphery. And yet I know that the moment I open that document, Ella's not going to kiss Kit anymore and someone is going to get run through and...spoilers? Just kidding. I can be creative and make stuff up here where it doesn't count but not where it does.

To be fair, I've changed a lot so far. And yes, I know that that's not technically editing. I go through stages. Stage 1: the write through. Like a read through for a script, only where I write the whole story. (It usually takes many, many, many sittings. Did I say usually? I meant three 'manys' is actually a miracle) Stage 2: the first reading. Here's where I focus on what's not there that needs to be. A good rule of thumb is to give yourself some time after finishing the piece before doing this part. You get here, you're high on life having written a whole novella/novel/whatnot, and everything looks and feels perfect! Been there, done that many (that silly word again) times. My first reading went well. I added what I thought was needed and figured, okay, content editing done, let's get to the grammar/spell check (stage 3). Everyone notice I missed a couple in book 1? (I know, don't point that out, but it's a teaching tool.) Self-publishing/editing your own work is really difficult. There is always something else that catches the eye and another thing that slips by. You've read the piece probably three or four or ten times by then. Your head sees what's supposed to be there even when your eyes don't. But that's a different problem entirely.

Stage 2 - content.

Stage 3 - "check."

So back to content. The first time I reread Captain, it looked good. It felt right. And then I figured, one more go round before submitting and formatting, just to be safe, and, lo and behold, nothing's quite so right anymore. There are things that are missing: scenes I didn't feel like taking the time to write in the first place that I can work a bit more with now. Things that needs to get gone: sorry random appearance by the Gnome king (I should not be allowed on the internet to look for mythical characters). Things that I don't even know what to do with yet or ever but, hey, that's not a bad idea but does it work for this book?

That's all a good thing! When books and so forth take longer than anticipated to get done, it's a good thing. It means that the author cares all the more about what's being written. I hope. Sometimes it means that there is that mental Sahara waiting to be crossed by the author to get to the other side. Sometimes it's just not the right time yet to get it done.

So it means that what was expected to be done in a week takes a bit longer.

Long story short, I was hoping to have book Two out by August 1, but now, maybe mid-month or even beginning of September. I know, I know, I’m sorry. But--

Cross your fingers, cross your heart, I really hate this rhyming part, even if it does sound more fantastical this way.

Just me?

Sigh...back to the document in back I guess.


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