Skip to main content

Let the revisions begin!

So, after ages since the last post I'm ready to say that The Last Iron Horse is officially deep into the first of the "concept" revisions. It's time to take the mess of a first draft and (hopefully) turn it into something better.

Notice I didn't say something good or great, but better?

There's still too much to do before we get into the grammatical edits - which takes each sentence (no, seriously!) and tweaks them by taking a word here and there to change the tone and feel of the book. 

While, yes, there is going to be some edits, the real meat of the revisions at this point deals with tying up plot holes, trying out different and alternate plots. It's all about tweaking the concept and not so much the finer details.

 Like sculpting the first draft is the rough cut. The main shape of the sculpture is evident but you still have no idea exactly where the nose is going on the face. You know there is a face, and arms (if it's supposed to have arms) and a body but the finer details of muscle, eyes, fingers and toes have not yet taken full shape.

It's in the revisions we hammer out details and they begin to show themselves. Did I miss something vital or change something vital that shouldn't change at all? In the case of The Last Iron Horse it's deadly critical as I'm adding to a series with one book already on shelves. If one of the main characters suddenly became intrinsically different, or out of character, with no explanation the reading experience would be jarring.

That's the funny thing about writing. The first draft, no matter how brilliant the writer thinks it is... or, rather, how great my biased family thinks it is... I will look at the finished first draft, read it and automatically want to burn it.

Or perhaps that's just me? (shrugs)

Anyway, no matter how much my really biased family loves the first draft it won't see the light of day. If it does comparing the two will be, excuse the overused cliche, like comparing night and day. 

Seriously - despite all the woes in the editing and revising of After Oil (I still do have the first draft) when I compare the two I sit there and what always comes out of my mouth is, "What was I on?" While it's still obviously the same work the specifics are wildly different. Why should the sequel be different? Or any other book?

And, in all honesty, that's the way we roll as writers and authors.

The Last Iron Horse still has at least two major revisions and rewrites. We will tug, tweak and pull things into shape. Like a sculptor we will take the rough cut and refine the idea of the final product into arms, legs and a body that actually looks like something before we even get into the actual editing.

The easy part is over...

... Now comes the hard work.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

How Pokemon Go works (or why I went from being a hater to loving it)

Okay, by now everyone and their brother have probably heard about Pokemon Go.  When it first came out I was like many who thought it was stupid.  People are running around, trying to catch a fake monster on their phones and tablets, and someti
mes being really stupid and trespassing, walking off of cliffs or into traffic.

Not for me.

So, what made me change my mind?

It had everything to do with researching everything I could find on it, including how it works and what makes the programming tick.

(Disclaimer: This blog post is not meant as a gameplay guide.  You may get a few tips and tricks from it, but the intent to find such is not here)

The first thing to note is how the Pokemon spawn rate works.

First things first:  If you're sitting someplace rural, you're probably SOL.  The reason is that the spawn rate/chance is directly linked to cell data and how many people in that area are actually playing or have played recently.  It doesn't matter if there is a Pokestop with a…

Between Silence and Fire - Book Three of the Kingdom of Walden Series - On Shelves October 28th, 2016

I'm really pleased to announce that the third book of the Kingdom of Walden Series, Between Silence and Fire, will be on shelves everywhere on October 28th, 2016. Some retailers already are selling it (Kindle) but you have one last week to wait if you want the hardcover.  It's almost here.
I can't believe it's been four years since I first wrote After Oil and started this whole thing.  You guys have been amazing in pushing me to keep the series going.  I'm sure some of you have also noticed the change from "Trilogy" to "Series"...
... Why is that?
Well, it's not a trilogy anymore!
You wanted more - and now you've got it.  I have already written (and apparently on Kobo it, too, is available for pre-order now) the fourth book of this series, Ghostwalker.  Ghostwalker will pick up almost immediately after this one ends... and you won't have as long a wait between this book and Ghostwalker.  Unlike these past three books, Ghostwalker wa…

The Zen of Inbox Zero

What most people don't realize about me is that I'm incredibly organized.  
I have to have a clear and clutter-free desktop (both on my computer and physically) and even my emails have to be cleared from my inbox.

I don't mean deleting them--I mean the zen of having a place for everything and filing it away to its place like you would with your various papers in life and your office.  This has a few benefits to me, and others who subscribe to the philosophy.  First off, to move an email to its corresponding folder means you've dealt with it and if you need to deal with it again later, it is easily found in the folder.  Mind you, using Gmail also has another benefit which is the search utility, but I still like to organize it all into the various folders and sometimes even subfolders because I like knowing... just knowing... where things are.

To open my inbox and only see emails that I haven't dealt with (or none at all) leaves me with this sense of peace that I hav…