Pay-offs, Subs, and Your Monday Fortune Cookie 10/28/13
ALL YOUR HARD WORK WILL SOON BE PAID OFF
SNARKY RESPONSE: Yeah, and the check is in the mail, right?
Talk about hard work!
Anyone who says writing isn’t hard, hasn’t been doing it right. At least that’s what I’ve been told and, frankly, that’s also been my experience.
Oh sure the first draft is a breeze! Caught up in the moment. Chasing that brilliant story idea down the pathways of your imagination…and over the cliff.
That’s the moment when you begin to realize that you have to worry about characterization, plot development, voice, theme, and grammar. All the fine details of continuity – names, physical characteristics, verbal tics. Is the setting easy to visualize and the world-building both invisible and convincing? Does the dialogue flow easily through the mind or off the tongue? No one can ignore the rules without paying the cost.
You have to make a solid effort to provide your reader with the best story told in the best way that you know how. And that takes work. Time invested in choosing the words, the phrases, and the action. Time putting it down on paper and then reading it over and over as you fine-tune it. Then time re-reading it and revising it some more. Words in/words out/rinse/repeat.
And from my perspective, while it might get easier as you become more experienced, it never becomes automatic.
I’ve just pushed the SEND button on a submission to my editor. It’s a terrifying moment knowing that it’s gone out of my hands, and I’m not going to be there when it arrives to help clear up any mistakes or misunderstandings. Will that cold read by my editor be all I hope it will be?
I just know that there’s gonna be something I missed. Something I didn’t quite nail. Heck, on that final read through, after having read Aces Down until I was green around the gills, I still discovered some continuity issues, missing words, and unclear situations. I fixed all I could find and now I have to hope it was enough. Enough to help my editor fall in love with Norah and Tristan, and the rest of the gang at Aces Down.
Well, only time will tell. Fingers crossed.