Saturday I officially started my "edits." I've spent the past month -- ugh, that long? -- writing seven new chapters for a subplot I decided to add, and as I finished those last week, it was finally time to get to the real edits.
Chapter One took me most of Saturday and it was only seven pages. Not the best start, but it was also the chapter with the most red ink from my readers. My wip originally started with what's now Chapter Two and I added the new first chapter because the action was actually starting too late (unlike most newbies who start it too early). That meant I'd spent less time tweaking the first chapter, and there were a lot of little details I'd left out.
Yesterday I tweaked some more (I fear this word will quickly dominate my vocabulary) and was all set to move onto Chapter Two when the Red Wings game started. I figured a three-hour break on a Sunday afternoon would be nice, but then they went and played THREE overtimes! In hockey, in the playoffs, overtimes are full-length periods (20 minutes) which means they played over five periods -- close to two full games. Needless to say, I didn't get much editing done after that.
Besides the setback yesterday, I'm really excited to finally be ON with it. I've got my word count to 81K -- woo-hoo! -- and I'm enjoying playing around with things and seeing how much I can improve them. I think I've set it aside long enough that I'm able to cut sentences without cringing, but no word yet on full paragraphs -- or eek! -- pages.
For those of you paying attention, I set aside Reading Like a Writer and I'm not sure if I'll go back to it. The lessons in the book are great and I can see how I might benefit from it, but I cannot stand the literary examples she uses and that makes it hard to read the book. The entire book consists of these examples, which she then deconstructs. Um, no.
I did, however, LOVE The Time Traveler's Wife. Oh wow, why didn't anyone tell me how GOOD it is? It took me over a week to finish because I was just drinking up the words and sentences, the descriptions, the emotions. It inspired my own writing so much that I'm tempted to keep flipping through it as I work on my edits.
I haven't started reading anything new yet, but I did pull Writing the Breakout Novel off my shelf. Several people have talked about it recently and since it still ranks as my favorite writing book, I figured it can't hurt to re-read the sections I highlighted on the first read.
Finally, if you haven't already, please take a moment to read my post from Saturday. A friend of mine from college is taking on his local school board to make sure his autistic son gets the education he deserves, and they need help raising the money to pay their legal fees.
Check out his site here:
Owen's Due Process Legal Fund