Starting a story is easy for me. I don’t know why but it just is. The end? Not so much. I have yet to know the end of a story (I mean in the novella or novel form) before I start from the beginning.
For most of 2017 I have been working on my rewrite/edit of my book, So Speaks the Gallows (if you’ve been keeping up with my blog and/or are subscribed to my newsletter, then you know this already). As I near the end of this endeavor, it’s interesting to find I have probably put the most work into the beginning and end of the book. I think this is good because of two reasons: the beginning is what I am banking on the reader to be gripped by (to keep reading) and the end should be satisfactory as a whole but also urge the reader to want to continue on this world. For the ending, I’m definitely more satisfied with the changes I’ve made.
Once my edit is complete, I am not finished (you never truly are finished with a story). I have both beta reader and personal notes that I need to go back through the book and apply. These are minuscule in size. Some are basic fixes like making sure I mention a detail about a character or place. Others might be a consistency issue. Now, some might think this trivial but I always think about the world needing to be lived in. It’s those small details that help add shades and tones, seeing the richness of everything.
I’ve been working on this book for a decade and I continue to be surprised when I come across a section or passage that makes me cringe. My eyes roll over it so easily now that I know I need to move slower from page to page. After all the editing is done, I will read my book out loud (alone without another soul within a hundred yards). The reason for this is to make sure what I read flows and doesn’t read clunky. I’ve got the future audiobook to consider!
So, I’m progressing with this wonderful story that I love to immerse myself into. I know the world and characters so well (I better after so many years!) and I continue to want to do them justice. I can’t get complacent or sloppy. Not now.
Call to Action: Anyone have any book recommendations? I realized I don’t ask this enough and I’m always looking for new books to add to my “To read” list. Fiction, non-fiction, autobiographies, etc. Let me know!