Self-editing and Critiquing #7

Instead of focusing on three points while going through my novel in editing stages I’ve been doing in depth focusing on each chapter. Ten pages at a time.

I’m looking at each scene and asking myself if it’s needed. I’m making sure it’s full of action. I’m reviewing the characters actions, to make sure they are acting like themselves. I’m also making sure that the characters are doing interesting things. And most importantly I’m making sure that my characters have wants which the reader knows.

I’ve also been working on setting to make sure the readers achieve a good understanding of the moon world that this story is in. It’s hard to make sure all this information is in each set of pages, but it’s important that I give that much development to this novel. I want it to be the best that it can be!

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Eight Sentence Sunday #8

I present to you Eight Sentence Sunday, a blog hop hosted by Weekend Writing Warriors. Here are eight sentences from the novel I am currently editing; Moon Murder.

A message chimed onto my screen. I opened it to a surprise video feed of the headmaster.

“What were you thinking taking the buggies out after I gave explicit instructions to not?”

“Mother was insistent, and I wasn’t going to let her go onto the moon by herself, that’s dangerous.”

“So is going out onto the moon without proper gear, and without proper supervision from people inside town.”

“Yes well. What’s done is done.”

“It’s not done until you get back, which will be immediately.”

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Eight Sentence Sunday #7

I don’t know what happened last week but this post didn’t publish on time! (I usually have this scheduled early in the week so I don’t forget.) I had a great streak going too! Oh well, time to start again.

I present to you Eight Sentence Sunday, a blog hop hosted by Weekend Writing Warriors. Here are eight sentences from the novel I am currently editing; Moon Murder.

She was shorter than me and mom yet this woman looked down at both of us simultaneously.

Melisa held out her hand, “I am the headmistress.” There was no comment on being pleased to meet us. The hand shaking seemed to be a formality she dealt with because everyone else expected it, and that was it. Why did I help this woman distract my mother?

A voice straight from Brooklyn came from my arm, “Hey there doll face ain’t you glad to see us? How about you get rid of that scowl of yours and show us where we can have some fun in this joint.”

Ah yes, that would be why.

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Self-editing and Critiquing #6

While some characters have obvious actions and tones of voice others are harder to distinguish. In the novel I’m editing I have a mother daughter combo as main characters. Since they are family my mind made them seem similar, with obvious differences in age, and less obvious differences in their life goals. 

But my beta readers have been saying that it is hard to figure out which one is speaking at which time because they are too similar. I’m trying to figure out the best way to fix this. 

It might be fun to make up some slang words for the daughter to use, but the mother doesn’t. Of course I don’t want to make it harder on the reader either. Making them remember what each word means, or worse look it up each time in a glossary, would take away from the story.

I had been trying to give each character word preferences, and I did make an attempt to have the mother use shorter more statement like sentences.Then again I wrote this during National Novel Writing Month. What I concentrated on one day was completely forgotten the next. I will attempt to add these differences more often throughout the novel, while small I do think they will help. If that doesn’t work I’ll have to go with my back up plan; give my characters catch phrases.

Self-editing and Critiquing #5

I’m in the throws of intense editing, also known as rewriting half a novel. I have found techniques which help make the process smoother, perhaps they can help you as well.

First I choose one scene to work on at a time, trying to look at the others as little as possible until the rewrite is complete.

Second I ask myself what I want to do with this scene. Who I want to introduce, what character development I want to see, and most importantly if I want it to end in an upbeat or a downbeat. 

What is that? When a scene ends with progress toward the characters goal then the scene ends with an upbeat. If a new obstacle appears between the character and their goals the scene ends in a downbeat. If there are too many scenes with one or the other in a row then it’s off putting to the reader which could make them put the book down. 

This brings us to our third point, I have to make sure that the characters current goals are clear to the reader. This can be simple, “His tummy rumbled, ready to devour the next edible object in sight.” Your character realizes he needs to eat, then his goal is to obtain food. These goals can also be complex such as a daughters need of acceptance from her parents. Clear goals are the way to help the reader root for your main character through their trials and tribulations. 

Eight Sentence Sunday #6

I present to you Eight Sentence Sunday, a blog hop hosted by Weekend Writing Warriors. Here are eight sentences from the novel I am currently editing; Moon Murder.

“Enjoy your implant while he lasts. As soon as we get back from the moon you’re going to get him removed.”

16, “Really mother? You’re going to make me go through an unneeded surgical procedure to get rid of a perfectly functioning robot?” She knew me too well.

“Besides, I’m devilishly intelligent and horribly quick witted. You might want to get rid of me now, but by the time our trip to the moon is done you’ll love having me around. I’m sure of it.”

Check out more at http://www.wewriwa.com/

Eight Sentence Sunday #5

I present to you Eight Sentence Sunday, a blog hop hosted by Weekend Writing Warriors. Here are eight sentences from the novel I am currently editing; Moon Murder.

A metallic voice split the night, “We meet again Clarissa.”

My name isn’t Clarissa, but that didn’t make the robot voice less threatening. He was obviously mistaking me for someone else.

“Umm, I’m not Clarissa.”

“Liar!” I tried to pinpoint where the voice was coming from, to no avail. It continued, “You’re the human that destroyed my life. The woman that took my eyes!”

Check out more at http://www.wewriwa.com/