Posts Tagged ‘editing’

Dragons Ahead

Time for specific answers to burning questions. Just what were the WTF moments IoD slapped me with? Are they legitimate?

(If you’ve just joined, here’s where you can find Part 1 and Part 2 of this conversation.)

The book I submitted was Unraveling Time, which I still feel is one of my best books. It does, unfortunately, suffer from having one of the roughest opening sections I’ve ever written. There are reasons the opening is so rough. The reasons do not excuse or justify its roughness, but they may be instructive to any writer rushing toward self-publication.

So below, after some backstory, I will examine the IoD charges, set down my verdicts, and wrap up this series of posts.


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Dragons Ahead

There are several things that, in younger years, I might have done with such a scathing critique as I received last week from Jefferson Smith’s Immerse or Die report.

(If you’ve just joined, Part 1 of this conversation can be found here.)

Most of these reactions are defensive in nature and, as such, they bring nothing to the table aside from their protective value. As I enter my dotage, I can safely say that one thing I’ know is this:

I can always learn if I want to do so, and I will never learn when I don’t.

And in this case, I want to.

So, here’s what I will not be doing in response to my IoD Smackdown.
(Writers: Pay close attention to Item #4 on the list.) (more…)

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Dragons AheadThis post is hard to write. It’s uncomfortable, and not a little embarrassing. No. More than that. It’s bloody humiliating. I debated whether or not I could ignore the situation entirely and pretend as if nothing had happened — Move along. Nothing to see here. — That, however, would have been neither honest nor productive, both of which are planks in the platform I use to run this blog.

And so, this post. (more…)

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Character study…

Some people do not have a volume switch.

Or, to be more precise, there are some people whose volume switch is stuck at ten.

Or eleven. (more…)

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Writing with Pen and Paper

Letters are nice things to get in the mail.

I’m not talking about bills or street-spam from your local dentist. I mean letters. Honest to God Letters, written by a person, meant for you and you alone.

Well, mostly…

There’s one kind of letter that I hate to get:

The Revision Letter.


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Stack of Books

I do not care for the heroic couplet.


It’s fine for a short poem or sonnet, but when you stack one atop the other for stanza after stanza, it gets predictable, monotonous, and boring. It’s why A Midsummer Night’s Dream is my least favorite of Shakespeare’s plays, as a huge portion of it is written in heroic couplets.

What does this have to do with writing prose? Plenty.


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It’s happened to us all. That moment when a word–a perfectly innocuous, everyday word–suddenly looks weird.

It happened to me the other day. The word was “dirt.” I wrote it down and suddenly it looked misspelled. I stared at it. I tried “durt,” but that was even worse. Dirt. Dirt.


Oddly, when I wrote “dirty,” that looked okay, but “dirt” still looked…wrong. Truncated. Too tall. Too narrow.

Last year, I had a similar episode with the word “schedule.” We haven’t gotten along, since.

Thankfully, these episodes are transitory. Eventually, usually within an hour, the word loses its alien quality and becomes once more a regular, banal word from my daily lexicon.

Except, that is, for the “odd ducks.” (more…)

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