What do you do when your editor tells you your book just isn’t good enough?

“I’ve realised that stories have infinite versions, infinite possibilities, and that digging through the spectrum of possibilities is the key to great story.”

Siobhan Daiko

What do you do when your editor tells you your book just isn’t good enough?

Shell-shocked and emotional, I wept, tore at my hair and paced the floor. Husband patted my back and suggested I give it up as a bad job. “You are really good at writing historical fiction,” he said. “Maybe contemporary erotic romance isn’t the right genre for you…”

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The only thing in life I’ve given up on, other than numerous diets, was riding horses, to my regret. I wasn’t about to give up on Three.

My editor John Hudspith’s advice was to dig deep for a better story, and then rewrite it. And that the secret to success was CONFLICT. My original narrative was too twee and my characters lacked depth. I needed to keep asking, “what if?” rather than letting them passively accept their situation. I needed to force my imagination out of its comfort zone…

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On John Hudspith and Editors and Editing

“Perhaps Johnny truly became the editor I had hoped for when I sent him my first draft of chapter one, and he wrote an entire page on a single word I had chosen on the very first line. Yes an essay, crammed into the side margin. In red. About a single word. In the first bloody sentence.”

Mike Chara

So I knew Johnny was the editor for me right from the get go, when I was first deciding to write a novel. I had wanted to write this novel several times over a period spanning a decade, but the time was never quite right. So being the [occasional] optimist, even before I put pen [fingers] to paper [keyboard], I started looking into how one goes about producing a novel from start to finish.

This was when I decided that editors were a thing you needed [logic below], found out book covers can be expensive, and avoided as much as possible all the decisions to make on publishing. This was when I visited various ‘editor’ websites; and found some of them splattered with terrible grammar, syntax and even spelling mistakes! One even had an entire paragraph dedicated to how help was given in making sure prose was clear and easily…

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Distractions

I LOVE MY WRITERS…

Mike Chara

If you are me, sometimes (most times) you send a chapter to your editor, and it comes back as a write-off. You are so terrible, there is no way to rectify the problem; you have to rip up the chapter and start again.

That’s fine, it was never going to be an easy road. So you’re halfway through the re-write, and you need a break, so you hit up your favourite Slack group and it so happens people are awake. Hurrah, distraction!

—————————————————-

mik 5:07 AM 5am what even are you awake for

luke 5:07 AM Dogs >.>

rigger-fatrick 5:08 AM #@!*%

Some of us are up for work

mik 5:08 AM what do you call  a dog with no legs

anything you like, it can’t catch you

rigger-fatrick 5:09 AM Lol

U dick

luke 5:09 AM It would still wake me up

Deciding whether to sleep or coffee up…

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Why I self-publish

I started my authorly life as a ghostwriter, penning thrillers that soared up the bestseller lists. When I went to agents and editors with My Memories of a Future Life, they said they liked my writ…

Source: Why I self-publish

Welsh Wednesdays Interview with Jan Ruth

If you spend on nothing else or have limited funds available, editing and proofreading is King and Story-is-everything-else.

writerchristophfischer

B&W lake (1)Today I have the pleasure of introducing author Jan Ruth. 
Welcome Jan, please tell us a little about your connections to Wales, what you like best about Wales and a bit about yourself.

Twenty years ago we moved from Cheshire to North Wales. Although Cheshire has its history and pretty rural surroundings aplenty, Wales is far more extreme in both aspects. The castles and the rugged hillsides scattered with stone settlements, druid’s circles and Roman roads bring out the historical muse in me. To think that I am treading the same path as someone who lived in the Iron Age, is both fascinating and humbling. Snowdonia kick-started my stalled obsession with writing in a very positive way.

The only historical event I can remember with any accuracy is good old 1066 and The Battle of Hastings. At school I was hopeless at dates, in fact anything to do with numbers…

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In The Chair 55

What do you dislike the most about Christmas?

John: Commercial tat made by far away children paid coppers, shunted to our shores via monster vessels leaving carbon footprints the size of China, and sold for ten times more than it cost to make. Instead, use that money to do something worthwhile: plant an MP, save a chicken, do an hour less work, that kind of thing.

janruthblog

Merry Christmas, John Hudspith!

SantaToymakerChair

How would you describe your Christmas in only three words? 

John: Merry. Bloated. Family.

If you could have a relationship with a literary festive character who would it be and why?

John: Sally Skellington. I’d have her in stitches. Or maybe Mrs Claus. Santa only comes once a year. I reckon she’d be grateful.

If you had to exist for a week in a Christmas story … which one would it be?

John: Maybe It’s a Wonderful Life – partly so I could experience being black and white. And partly to enjoy being mesmerised by James Stewart’s Donald Duck voice whilst crying at the beautiful side of humanity. But then again that chick in Gremlins is pretty hot. Yeah, give me Gremlins instead.

2014-new-arrival-Sexy-Christmas-font-b-Costume-b-font-font-b-Mrs-b-font-fontDead or alive literary Christmas lunch: who would you invite, and what would you serve? 

John: I have over fifty writers on my books, hardworking…

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Publishing: A lot of Smoke and Mirrors?

“The industry is flawed, floundering, and fluctuating. This is because there are real choices open to writers to maintain their individuality and creativity, and boats have been rocked.”

janruthblog

In which I’m made to eat my words as I come full circle through the maze of publishing to discover that the grass isn’t necessarily greener over there; it’s still mostly desert scrub from every direction…

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Last year I wrote a general post about the publishing industry which resonated with a lot of independent authors: https://janruthblog.wordpress.com/2015/02/27/my-affair-with-john-hudspith-and-why-i-had-to-leave-self-publishing/

It came about through sheer frustration at the lack of visibility and the cost of producing books. A turning point came when a small press offered a contract for Silver Rain. This is it, I thought. This is the change of direction I need… but be careful what you wish for! Don’t get me wrong in that I had huge delusional ideas at this stage. I was simply seeking greater visibility and some respite from the nuts and bolts of self-publishing.

And all the outward signs were good: they took five back-catalogue titles and one…

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Just Writing

just writing

On Writing & Editing

Just Writing

sat all afluff a plump chump on his horse
grinning aloof for the writing of course
nets filled, gathered at speed
delighted with the merrytoed easeI thank you!
but the rain came thicker than who would know
hidden beasts bicker outside and in
scrumple it, fill the bin
eject erase reject you are
hammers down knives slash truth hurts bah
get moving and shaking and keeping ajar
the forests clear, seas ebb, grains be seen
bingo sings atop the toil
and dawn floods the truth does hurt for some
not merry not sherry not lingo savvy
truth claims
truth wins
just writing

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Genesis

“If you can imagine eating dead embryonic flesh smothered in runny Camembert, you’ll get the idea.”

EXPLORING THE CREATIVE PROCESS- PART I: An interview with Prue Batten, author of “The Gisborne Saga”

The Armitage Authors Network

When Trudy and Julia invited me to join their blog last April, I was thrilled about the opportunity to collaborate on an endeavour that seeks to celebrate creativity within Richard’s fandom and acknowledge with a grateful nod the man whose wonderful characters have been an inspiring muse to budding and experienced authors alike.

Being a writer myself, I’ve always been interested in the process of creation and how it’s approached by my fellow authors. Although there are dozens of manuals in the market with tips and recipes to write a novel, there’s nothing like going to the source, the novelists themselves, to unveil the magic behind the stories and characters that invite us to dream, feel and think.

A few years ago, while writing for another fandom, I was asked some really interesting questions on my writing process, and they somehow made their way into my introductory interview for Armitage…

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