Sunday, March 18, 2012

Notes, Editing, and More Notes

You are in the mid-stream of edits on your novel, and something hits you as you're reading through. Oh! I forgot to mention Steve's appearance in here so that it won't be a big surprise at the end.

So, you have to make a note of this.

Later on, while washing dishes, you think of something you might want to change in the WIP. Note time!

Do you do this? I've had to keep a notebook while working on edits to a WIP. It isn't quite the same thing as while I'm working on writing the novel. Edits are different. These are bits and pieces that occur to you as you're working along. It's not too late to change anything in a WIP. I've edited out whole chapters, and characters in novels. I did that with my first vampire novel, Vampire Ascending.


I will write the date at the top of a new page each day, and make notes as to what pages need a little added attention. I like to write down where I've ended too, and if there's anything special I need to go back and do on any given page. I'll also make note of having finished a whole chapter--something to celebrate later because editing is really menial and you can get bored fast. I'm in the edits process where I've high lighted words that are repeated too often, or phrases which are signature of my lazy writing. I've posted about this over on Lorelei's Muse, so I won't go into detail here.

The notes will help you keep in mind things that need to be worked in. I actually have a separate notebook on just little things that need to be added to the work. This helps me keep it all in one place. I might have a line that sounds better than one that's already in there, and I have to jot it down while I'm thinking of it or it all disappears with time. Also, this spot might be back in a section I've already covered, or somewhere ahead, and I keep this notebook handy for when I need to refer to it.

Like I've been taught, edits take as long as they take. To tell yourself you'll do them in a few weeks time is really not a good idea. You might submit it for publication, and later think about something you might have left out, over-looked, or something will cause you to have sleepless nights. And I hate sleepless nights! If you aren't going through your work multiple times, then you're being careless. Hopefully a final edit by your publisher, or your own editor, will catch the things you've missed, but don't leave it all up to them to catch. It might be sent back with a note about needing more editing by you. It's a good idea to get your WIP as polished as you can before pushing it out of the nest.

Happy Editing!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

*Sigh* Fed up with Facebook Groups

I belong to (have been added to, I should say), a number of facebook groups. (I have since quit 2, because it was more than I could handle.) I like finding out about other writers, their books and so forth, but really, I don't buy anything on-line, and if I buy a book it's going to be something with actual pages and so on.

Yes, I've tried to read books on my computer. I hate it. When I read I want to sit in a comfortable chair with an open book in my lap. If I'm at work, or somewhere I need to have distraction like at the dentist office, I can easily put a paperback book into my purse.

But the one thing I've noticed about these writer's groups on f.b. is you get a lot of people posting about their books, and the deals (some of them are just giving away copies)--which is fine, because it is their group, after all. If you post anything at all, it gets washed down the page by several other people putting up news about some of their stuff. I don't post that much in them. Once in a while I grab someones attention about a blog post. Unless I have some sort of news about my book (a sale, for instance), I've quit posting about my books in these facebook groups. It's useless.

Why? Because if I get any attention right now, it might be from another author, and I do enjoy finding new people to interact with on here, but realistically, I might have one sale per month from doing this. It peeters out after a while and everyone has checked into your book and have bought it, and if they did--that's the end of the run.

I think what I'm saying is this--if you join several of these facebook sites and think you'll grab a lot of readers, maybe you'll gain a few, but that's about it. If you are lucky to get someone who wants you to be a guest at their blog, that's great. I've gotten a number of people out there who have offered me a spot on their blogs (I didn't even have to ask). This is much more worth the bother of getting on these places than trying to "sell" anyone your book. You can make friends there, and some will help you promote your book, but if you think that this is the way to sell lots of books, think again. It isn't really going to help you sell many.

Also, the time in which it takes (for me at least), to "share" something on one or several of these places, it comes out to me having spent maybe 15-30 min. wasting my time. Some people who have created these facebook groups and have invited me (you) to them post hourly. And it becomes somewhat of a competition between your stuff and their stuff. I find it worthless for me to even bother some days and ignore the posts. Usually it is only about a sale on their books. Rarely is it something that is interesting to me, as a writer.

I've created my own groups, but other than my own fan page, I'm not trying to hard-sell you anything. And my fan page is stuff about my blog, or my books. I'm not going to hard-sell it to you. I think someone continuously doing this is like holding a megaphone to your ear. "Alright already! Yes, yes, your book is award-winning. I get it already!" *crossing eyes*

I'm going to investigate getting some real ads out in real newspapers (yes, there are still some out there in a localized area), and reach some REAL readers--not writers. If you want to have sales, you need to reach people who read books as their passion, and in your genre. If you continuously post in groups or even on your own blog, eventually you run out of people who have yet to read your books.

Don't get me wrong. The social media is good for what it does for us, but what I've found is that people who don't blog don't know about you/your books. They might go on-line to Amazon, but they may never know about your books unless you do it the old-fashioned way and advertise. 

I've quit two groups, and am thinking of quitting one more, because the competition is really against me getting noticed. So... I think I'll go and do that now.

Have a good Sunday, everyone!