Saturday, March 15, 2014

Calling All Authors: Can You Relate: Issue 2: Rebecca Draco

Calling All Authors: Can You Relate? Issue #2

…Everyone that ever writes a single paragraph can relate to that “great ah-ha moment” when you work the plot out, or your character says something unexpected, and you can actually figure out what to do with what they said and take it and run with it, maybe even in a different direction from where you were headed in the beginning. I’m not a plotter. I’m a pantser, so I have lots of great “ah-ha” moments because if I didn’t, I’d never know where to turn next. I try to write in chapters, not just scenes, but chapters. Of course, there’s lot of editing involved later on, but I have the basic chapter rough draft down, then I figure out where the heck I’m going next, and how to get there. I usually take a break after the chapter, and I’ll get up and do something around the house, or knit, or read, and think…about what to do next, while I let what I just did settle in. Of course, “ah-ha” moments also have to come when I go back and edit, and I realize that because I’m a pantser, something doesn’t click, or the chronology isn’t right…or who knows what else. Then I have to get everything to mesh.

…Everyone who’s ever entered a contest or had a book published and reviewed can relate to crossing their fingers and dreading opening the contest judge’s comments sheets or reading the review of their work, so if you can relate to getting a 5 star review, or even a 4 star review, hoorah for you, but anything less than that, take it with a grain of salt, and keep on truckin’, and know that there are others out there who can also relate to getting 3 star reviews from people who either didn’t like your work, or didn’t “get” your book, or who may not have even read your book. Which of course is just silly on the face of it. A rejection letter from an editor who “doesn’t love it as much as she thought she would love it” falls under the same line of dreading to open that ever-lovin’ envelope, or email. Ugh. That’s all you say about that.

…Everyone who’s published, in any fashion other than self-publishing, can relate to the excitement of “getting the call”, in whatever way that comes, either via email or actually over the phone, which before self-publishing used to be more important than it is today. I applaud those courageous enough to self-publish, and I especially applaud those that “make it” when they self-publish because that’s tough, and more work than I want to do. I have only ventured into e-publishing, but I love my publisher, and I am so glad I have them, and their artists for the covers, and the editors for the editing, and all the rest of the publishing insanity.

…Everyone who’s published can also relate to the thrill of receiving their cover, especially their first one, but even each one after that, especially a really pretty cover that tells your story even before the reader opens the book. Thank God, for those eye catching covers that “sell” the book, and the artists who create them.

…Everyone can relate to “wanting” to make it to the top 100 list on or the equivalent of that, but not everyone makes it, so everyone can also relate to being happy with wherever they are in their publishing journey…for now. Enjoy the journey. You might not make it to the top, but loving what you do as you do it, will make it not matter if you never make the best sellers list. By happy. Enjoy the writing process. Love what you do. And when you can relate to that…you might want to change direction, and do something else.

…Everyone that’s got an editor can probably relate to not agreeing with your editor wholeheartedly on every single change or suggested change, but hopefully you can come to a middle ground, and either accept the change and find a way to accommodate, or get the editor to agree with you, which does happen. Really. I have never had to tell any editor no to a change they suggested, but I’ve never been asked for any huge, deal breaker changes either, like I’ve heard some authors have been. So I can’t relate to that extreme, and I hope I never have to worry about that. Of course, in today’s world of self-publishing option, I think a lot of authors would do that, if an agreement couldn’t be reached.

…Everyone who’s ever finished a Work in Progress can relate to writing THE END. Of course, then come the self-edits, then the submissions, then…well, you know. All that others stuff we can also relate to, and of course, it’s not over just because we finished the book, but it’s still so satisfying to be done, and think that now you begin the journey to publishing that work and having someone read your “baby”, and hope they don’t think it’s “ugly”.

…Everyone who’s not a plotter has to work about getting to the sagging middle and not having a clue what is to happen. This is where plotters have the advantage, and pantsers get suck, sometimes, but there’s always those fabulous ah-ha moments to look forward to, so you can dig yourself out of the sagging middle hole.

…A million thanks to Jan Scarbrough for her input in this edition of Calling All Authors: Can You Relate by Rebecca Draco


Julie Eberhart Painter said...

I'm in your choir stall, pacing and waiting for inspiration. It is a hard way to write, but if you plan everything, your books can be stale.

So we use what we have...gee, I didn'tknow I was going to say that!