Saturday, August 3, 2013

Revision Boot Camp and Salted With Fire!

Hello, friends! And welcome to August! Yay! Three more weeks til school and my normal routine will return. Phew!

Over the last week I've put myself through an intense revision boot camp, so I thought I'd share what worked best, since I'm no stranger to hefty revision requirements. If you remember a couple months back I'd just finished my first draft and was relishing the euphoria that came with my creation--that "It's Alive!" moment when our projects take on a life of their own.

But I knew revisions would be coming, because let's face it, no one puts out a perfect first draft, and if you do, well I hate you. lol ... just kidding. That'd be jealousy speaking.

I sent out the first draft to my long time trusty and amazing CP, as well as a brand new CP, of whose opinion I was very interested, and let the shredding commence. I also participated in the Whip It Blogfest and made a new connection for a beta reader, and sent the story to her as well. Then, I waited.

The waiting is always the hardest part because you feel helpless and unproductive, but it's also a necessary step back from the story. Ended up being a month before all the feedback was in, (which isn't bad at all) and there were some major revision suggestions to improve the structure--of which I totally agreed with. It was what I couldn't put my finger on.

But it'd be a LOT of work, that during the busy summer, wasn't going to be convenient at all. And I wasn't even sure how I'd tackle them. I felt like I'd been served up an elephant and a timer and expected to consume it within minutes. That was because I was anxious to get in there and get'er done. But how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

I gave myself a few more weeks to let the ideas marinate and form my course of action. Then, I begged my hubby for two full days all to myself so I could bust out the shears and hacksaw and blowtorch and get in there. He's so awesome, and he knows how much my stories mean to me. He let me have the two days and I used each to its fullest. Boot camp with chocolate bars! After the hard part was done, I sent it to my kindle and did another two day straight read-through. And found LOTS to fix that way. One more day of boot camp let me transfer my notes to the actual manuscript and polish it off to a brilliant shine. (well, that's what I'm hoping anyway)

And voila! Revisions are done (til the next batch) and the story ready for its next round of beta readers. How do you like them apples?? ;)

Moving on, today I'm thrilled to be a part of Nancy LaRonda Johnson's Salted with Fire blog tour:

If you don't already know Nancy, you can find her at her blog  right here. And i just know you'll love her.

She's got two books out now:

Anticipation of the Penitent is a dark tale of good vs. evil. You can purchase it on Amazon, and Smashwords.

And Salted with Fire is a journey of flash fiction and poetry, and it's on sale right now on Amazon, and Smashwords.

Big congrats to Nancy!!

Also FYI, one of our fellow bloggers, Stina Lindenblatt, recently let her web domain expire before renewing--one with her own personal name--and someone swooped in and bought it before she could renew. Which means she lost all her following and is starting all over. This happened right before her big announcement of an agent and a book deal, too!! Can you imagine?? So be aware of this and watch out for your domains. And head over to Stina's new blog and congratulate her!

How about you? Have you ever had a domain swiped out from under you? Tell me about your revision process---similar to mine or do you have a better method? Dont forget to visit Nancy and Stina today!!! Have a fantastic weekend!!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Congratulations, Nancy!
That was nice of your husband to give you those two days. I've never had to do revisions that involved a lot of hacking and moving of scenes, but then I do plan the heck out of my manuscripts before beginning.
I've never had a domain but that would be awful to have someone take it.

Tammy Theriault said...

Girl it was an absolute pleasure getting to do edits with you!!! You gave a real winner!
Congrats to Nancy!

Dianne K. Salerni said...

I have the opposite thought regarding the end of summer. NOOOOO! Yes, that's the cry of a teacher who wishes she were a full time writer.

I heard about what happened to Stina, and I have to wonder how those unscrupulous people are able to swoop in that fast to pick up personal name domains. Someone with access to the registrations, who knows when they expire?

Nancy LaRonda Johnson said...

That's a big accomplishment to get done with your first draft! Congrats. And thanks for having me over! Wishing you the best. Writer’s Mark

Carole Anne Carr said...

Well done with your first draft. I'm still struggling. Doesn't seem to matter how much I plan, there is always some problem to overcome. Have my child hero escaping through parkland at the moment,can't decide in which direction to take him! Arghh...

michelle said...

PK your hubby is a superstar...and it sounds like you did okay with your first draft.
And Nancy rocks!
Writer In Transit

Nancy LaRonda Johnson said...

But nobody rocks like you Michelle! :) Writer’s Mark

Lexa Cain said...

You did a revision in 5 days?! Mine take 3-4 months (and I edit as I go, which means my first drafts take over 6 months). I must be the snaily-est writer on the planet. :(
Congrats to Nancy, and good luck on your future revisions, PK, though you don't seem to need it - you're doing great! :-)

Donna Hole said...

Really really, the only way to get through feedback is to wait it out. And then, let it marinate. No author likes to hear this or that isn't quite working, but eventually, we see the wisdom - or not. If you let feedback percolate a while and still disagree, then it was bad advice.

Revision is frustrating and fulfilling both. Have your emotions and then get to work. Which is what you did.

Wow, two days of absolute writing time without guilt. Totally awesome. Cool you have a supportive family.


Sheena-kay Graham said...

That's some top notch revising. Also jealous of your CPs. Congrats Nancy.

Trisha F said...

Massive congrats to Nancy, again!!! As for revisions, I'm actually struggling to get back into ANYTHING resembling writing work (i.e. writing, revising, whatevers), and it's tough. I keep watching Gilmore Girls instead. ;) But I'm at least doing dribs and drabs here and there!

James Garcia Jr. said...

Congrats on the WIP and best of luck with it as you move forward. I love the imagery of you with all that heavy equipment, gutting your manuscript and making it shine!:)
Enjoy what's left of your summer schedule, my friend.


Christine Rains said...

Congrats on getting the revisions done! They're my least favorite part. Hope you're enjoying your weekend. :)

mshatch said...

Yay for you getting all that work done; that's fantastic. I just started a big revision. Yikes!

fOIS In The City said...

PK, lost the last comment. I'll try again. Congrats on your revisions. Love the cover :) Let's see if this one goes through.

Barbara Watson said...

Yay for revisions!! I used to despise them, but the more I write, the more I love them because they FIX things. :-)

Gina Gao said...

Good job in terms of the revisions!

Libby said...

There is something really cool about reading a draft on your kindle. I fine more grammar errors that way than any other method.

David List said...

Congrats on finishing that first draft! I actually just wrote a post on the editing process and yours is quite different than mine (although I was literally rewriting from ground up...)
It's good to have test readers! I've learned to give my book to them and just pretend I didn't... because 90% never get back to me. I don't have any fellow writers as test readers.
(sad face)

David List - Regarding Silexare

Deanie Humphrys-Dunne said...

Congratulations to Nancy and PK! Good job. Best wishes,

William Kendall said...

Congratulations to Nancy!

PK, boot camp with chocolate would be very welcome.

Nancy LaRonda Johnson said...

Thanks everyone for your cheers and well wishes. Writer’s Mark