Hard to believe, but Vol. 3 of my Where You Left Me series is going to the editor on Monday! I’ve gone through four drafts of this volume. Most stories I write get at least four drafts, sometimes more, but rarely less. I thought it might be fun to explain what I do in each draft.
First draft=Word vomit. The story comes out as mostly dialogue. Inconsistencies and typos are galore. But the bones of the story get laid out.
Second draft=Cleaning up the major plot/character issues of the first draft. Lots of revision/cutting/and general shoveling of shit off the page. Oh, and lots of my head banging on the desk at the crap I’ve written.
Third draft=Adding in sensory details. Fine-tuning phrases. Killing repetitive words and crutch words.
Fourth draft=Listening to it read aloud by Word. Listening for missing words, wonky sentences/flow.
Editor=The editor does her thing. Catches so many errors it makes you question your sanity.
Personal Revisions=I look at the editor’s suggestions, and either take them or leave them (I almost always take them unless I’ve decided on something for a reason. But I go through each and every one of her suggestions and either accept or reject them.)
Format=Once the edits are in play, I’ll format the manuscript for e-book and paperback and create EPUB/MOBI files for the next stage.
ARC Readers=Advanced Review/Reader Copies. A small selection of trusted readers get the first look at the edited, but an unpublished manuscript in advance of the release. These readers act as the final eyeballs before it goes live. Only small things like typos or formatting issues can be caught her. If your plot sucks… it’s too late to change it now! These readers also have the option to leave a review on release day so this can be a make-or-break situation. ARC copies going out are wildly terrifying for an author because if you hated it, there isn’t time to change anything.
Then, it’s live to the world, for better or worse.
Currently, Vol. 4 is in the First Draft phase. I’m up to Chapter 16 and should be done with that draft in a few weeks. Then, I’ll give it a week or so to get out of my immediate headspace so I can come back to it with a fresh set of eyes for that dreaded draft two revision. Vol. 5 will start its first draft at the end of the year.
Wanna get in on the ride? It’s a steamy contemporary romance about being left at the altar and just how great that turns out to be.
WHERE YOU MET ME (Free prequel chapter)
WHERE YOU LEFT ME, Vol. 1
WHERE YOU LEFT ME, Vol. 2
WHERE YOU LEFT ME, Vol. 3 (Pre-order)
Vol. 4 and 5 coming soon!
Until next time, friends!