Tuesday, November 20, 2012

All Ribbons and Bows

Sometimes things might seem great. Might even seem completely awesome. Like writing your first chapter. You read it over and think, "Yeah this is totally the one!" But then after you finish the entire Manuscript of course, your CP's have a whole other opinion about it. And yes, they tore it to shreds.

Now, you may cry. You may even get mad. You may even email them or say things to others like "Can you believe this???" Well, yes. Yes I can believe it. In some instances (Rare) instances your CP might actually be a half bubble off. In others though, they are telling you good things.

Whenever I get a MS back that I sent to Cp's first I read all the comments. I close the window, once I'm finished, and a day or two later I re-look the notes over. Why? Why not just hack away and fix? Because sometimes taking advice from others requires a certain finesse. Now when I reopen these notes, I might not agree with everything. Point is I must have a clear goal, with three questions and answers.

 What's the questions: Will this change make this better?, Is this information necessary?, Can this be moved without changing the story or confusing the reader?

If the first is a YES, change whatever CP suggested. The second is a NO don't remove that from your story. The third and final is a YES then try to find a place for it.

We learn something new everyday. Recently I learned how to make my beginnings better, and make a reader care about the character. :)

Recently what have you learned? When you get editorial notes back how do you handle them?

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Reading and applying

I recently entered a contest and won. The prize I won was a copy of Les Edgerton's HOOKED. Have any of you read this? If you haven't it's fantastic. If you're a serious writer or at least want to be, but are having trouble keeping agents from requesting more than a partial from you, then this is the book for you. It's all about how to hook a reader from the first page and keeping them interested. Seriously, go put this on your wishlist for the Holiday's. You won't regret it.

The thing I love about improvement books, is you can gain so much knowledge from them. But the thing some people might dislike about them is that they have no idea how to apply what they may have learned. Sometimes this can be difficult.

For instance: In HOOKED, I learned that agents and editors have a check list. Things they look for within those first pages that will either make them say, nope, stop reading and go on to the next pile, or continue reading. Well, what are some of these things? If you start off with dialogue and continue without any kind of direction to the story then they might stop reading after the first chapter. If you flood your first chapter with massive amounts of back story you might as well shoot yourself in the foot.

This book helps you see how to overcome these silly mistakes. YAY!

So what's in books that usually hook's you?

For me: I love a strong voice, and the occasional love interest, however make me laugh and I'm usually sold.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Oh my!

'Tis the season. For sharing and giving and all that fun holiday stuff. YALITCHAT is celebrating it's third birthday, and in doing so is holding an AWESOME contest: Agent for the holidays! What?

It's an awesome way to pitch to agents. So what are you waiting for??? You want an agent well, here's a chance to get one. Click on this YALITCHAT HOLIDAY CONTEST Don't write YA??? No problem, this contest is for everything: YA, MG, NEW ADULT, ADULT....

Good Luck!

Monday, November 5, 2012

5 days in

For those of you in NaNoWriMo, it's your fifth day. How are you doing so far?

In NaNoWriMo, it's good practice for finishing a novel. Those of us who mastered this, it's good time management skills. Those who've mastered that, it's a fantastic time learn how to follow an outline. This is difficult for me. I've just started outlining last year. Why is it difficult to follow? Because my characters take a hold of my mind and then my story goes off in whatever direction they take it.

Now, even if you aren't in NaNoWriMo, you can do little things to improve your writing. Make a simple goal, ex: I plan on writing 12k words by the end of this month. Hit it, or strive past it. But make small reachable goals. Once you do this a few times make them a little harder.

I plan on conducting my personal best by writing EVERY day. That's my goal. It could be anything too, from outlining, which I've done for Rival Love since Spoken is finished and out with publishers. Yay! And waiting...well that's never fun, so I must keep my mind occupied. And while I clean, write, and think about thanksgiving I'm reaching my goal everyday.

Hows your writing coming along? Does your characters change the direction of your story? What do you do when this happens?