Monthly Archives: July 2008

And then the whole frieght train analogy came to mind…

So the goal was to have LET’S DISH out to the editor before I went back to the 9-5 in August. That was before I screwed it up totally.

As I sat at my desk today with both hands woven into my hair and tugging, my husband asked me if I was okay. Okay? Okay? I changed something in chapter one that screwed up everything in chapter nine!! How can I be okay??

But that’s not what I said. I mean the guy doesn’t actually get it, but he’s trying.  Instead, what I told him was this:

I feel like I’m driving a freight train toward a bridge, except I see the bridge is out and I can’t stop the train. Then I manage it to pull it back, and even think I fix the bridge. But then I get to the next chapter and there’s that darned hole in the track again.

So the child beside me says, “Kinda like dominos, right?” Yes, he had a better grip on my dilema than I did.

It’s exactly like dominos. I have them all set up and they fell just the way they were supposed to. Except someone really liked my dominos, but wanted a few changes. Those changes caused a chain reaction, making me move all my dominos. And since I keep knocking down the whole kit and caboodle, I need to keep rebuilding it.

Here’s a hint, though. If you’re revamping a book you haven’t actually read through in two years, before you tear apart chapter one, read the damned thing again. Really. Save yourself the pain.

I wrote earlier that the husband doesn’t get it, and it’s true. He’s not a writer. But he does get that this is a job. Work. Except imagine if you went to work, put in an eight hour day, and were told that even though you worked your buns off, you weren’t getting paid for it since the work didn’t suit your employers needs. No salary for you unless ten different people like your work enough. That’s writing, baby. Man, who would voluntarily do this?

That would be me. Well, back to the self-fladuation. Chapter nine, here I come. Time to fix that damned bridge again.

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My Breaking Point? Chapter Seven.

Progress on LET’S DISH is… well, progressing. I’ve hit chapter seven, made some changes, and now I’m frozen solid. Over one scene.

The editor who read the book liked it pretty well, I think. Otherwise why spend the tremendous time it took her to make such specific notes? So I am right now fighting the urge to tear the whole thing apart and rebuild it from the ground up. After all, she even said that with a few exceptions, I could accomplish what she wanted by adding and not cutting.

So why is one scene giving me such fits? Because it’s riding a line.

The idea is to turn what is essentially a women’s fiction into a romance. That in itself is not a huge issue. Certainly do-able. Just flesh out my hero a little better, meet him a little sooner, and play up the sexual tension that’s already present. But this editor also asked me to make the book more about my MC and the hero, less about her relationships with others. So the scene I am agnoizing over involves her parents. The scene serves a purpose, but I’m not sure it’s a purpose I want to serve anymore. I could replace it with a scene with the hero, but I am questioning whether doing so just shoves him down the reader’s throat. I mean this guy keeps showing up where he’s obviously not wanted. Persistence is one thing, but this guy has got to have the slowest learning curve known to man.  So do I keep the scene, replace the scene, or just crawl into a bottle of Merlot and hope the answer comes to me in a drunken haze.

Good thing I don’t really drink.

What I keep telling myself is to relax. After all, she liked my work. That’s big. So what if I send her the revision and she doesn’t like it? I still come out the other end with a better, more marketable book. I’m certainly out nothing but perhaps a few brain cells. So I just need to get over myself, make a decision, and go forth.

So how come I’m still not sleeping?

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