Wednesday, October 5, 2016

October IWSG: To the Editing Cave!

First Wed of Every Month
Come join Alex J. Cavanaugh and the Insecure Writer's Support Group. We discuss our fears, insecurities, ups and downs of the writing process and post the first Wednesday of every month! http://alexjcavanaugh.blogspot.com/p/the-insecure-writers-support-group.html


This month's question: When do you know your story is ready?

Definitely not December 1st--the day after NaNo. Let the rough draft breathe and then dive into editing, oh, say for the next six months or so. When do I think my story is ready? I'm glad you asked. When I type THE END and start talking to myself with phrases like the following: this is it, I can relax now, time for a break, then I'm certain it's not ready. Pull back. Retreat! Get those editing goggles back on. Grab those CPs and beta readers for another walk through.

Whenever you are positive your story is ready, trust me, it's not. Those tiny plot holes will haunt you in your sleep, keeping you awake until you fix them. Just like with construction projects, always add another month or two or three before declaring your story complete. Then you might be ready. Unfortunately, I've learned this the hard way.

To the editing cave! But remember to fill this cup first.


P.S. Feeling pretty good this month after my ghostly middle-grade mystery placed third in the AUTHORS.me diversity writing contest. My MC is a boy in a back brace, but I can't tell you how he got that way or what happens because it's an integral part of the story. Cue the happy dance!

Do you disappear into a hideout, aka the Batcave, when writing? Any good news this past month? Working on a new story? Gearing up for NaNo?

32 comments:

  1. Congrats on your ghost story! Are you doing NaNo this year? I'll be editing. :D And spending 2 1/2 weeks in Hawaii. I know. Rough life. :D

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    1. Thanks! Yes, I always start the month before and finish by Christmas. I make the rules. It's just my thang;) Have fun!!!

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  2. So when IS it ready, then? ;-)

    Congratulations on your story! Nothing so exciting for me this month, and no NaNo; I have enough projects on the go to commit to another one!

    IWSG October

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    1. You know that feeling in the pit of your stomach when you avoid a car crash? That awesome, wonderful feeling? That's when you know it's ready.

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  3. "trust me, it's not." Haha. So true.

    Congratulations on your ghost story making third place. YAY!! I've been in a back brace, so that piques my interest.

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    1. Unfortunately, I've read dozens of manuscripts that "think" they are ready. Thank you!! My son's bff broke his back two years ago. In no way was I spying on him and taking notes.

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  4. Blunt but honest! Sometimes we need a reality check.

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    1. Blunt is my middle name. Especially with teenage boys in the house.

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  5. What!? HUGE CONGRATS!!! I'm so, so happy for you. Now I'm bouncing up and down. You're making it really hard to focus here. ;)

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    1. Thank you!! I even got some CASH, so that's cool. :-)

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    2. Ooh! Cash and a win? Now we're talking. *turns to the crowd* The cheese is on Jennifer!

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  6. Yep, there is always something at play.

    Congrats on your story!

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  7. Yss, yes, yes. I duck into my office in my basement and feel quite at home in my world. Right now I am getting my mind ready for NaNo.
    All the best.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Patricia

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    1. Me too! Mind ready for writing. I'm cheating and starting early.

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  8. Congratulations on your story success. Edit and edit and edit some more . . . yep I think that's about right. Cool mug too :)

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  9. I can write almost anywhere as long as there's no one around and it's quiet. Sometimes I turn on ambient music/white noise to block out other sounds, but mostly I like it quiet. Oh, and I can't be feeling guilty about some chore I know I should be doing instead. It kills the writing mood in me.

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    1. Me too. The kids need to be at school before I can fly off to the editing cave.

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  10. Congratulations on the success for your ghost story!

    First drafts are the bane of my existence. They take me forever. But I love to revise. I know revisions are done when I find myself changing nothing more than a word here or there.

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    1. Thank you!! I just throw stuff down for the first draft--telling myself the story. The magic happens in the next round.

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  11. Not the day after NaNo. That made me laugh. Congrats on your success!

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    1. Then I have succeeded in life. Laughter is addictive! And thanks:)

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  12. Yeah, that's hard. You think it's done but it's not. But then when is it done?

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    1. I just know when I'm convinced it's ready, it's not. *sobs forever*

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  13. Hi, Jennifer! I enjoyed your post! I have some tiny plots holes that are haunting in my sleep right now ~ so I really connected with that. I disappear when I'm writing ~ not into a bat cave, into my own head. I can be sitting in the midst of things and only notice a lot of time has gone by when my husband plunks some food in front of my face. Love that mug! It's an important reminder for someone who can forget to come up for air. Happy writing this month!

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    1. I'm so glad! It's funny how the tiniest of plot holes creep up when I'm driving or drifting off to sleep.

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  14. Have fun in your cave! My office is in my garage, so I try to hide, but it seems like my kids always find me.

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  15. Yeah, editing, got to put that work in although we'd like it to be ready sooner! But nothing good can be ready without a lot of hard work. Congrats on your contest placement!

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  16. Oh yes, I definitely retreat into my bat cave; in fact, I'm in here now. No bats, though... just cats. :)

    Congratulations on your story winning third prize! That's quite an accomplishment.

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  17. Congrats on your 3rd place award! That's so exciting! You have good ways to tell when your story's done. Feedback helps me.

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  18. Love the colours in your photos! Congrats on your award . . . definitely time to do the happy dance. Best of luck with your writing and editing this month.

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