Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Second Edits

There are first edits, second edits, third edits, proofing, noonsies, luncheon, dinner, supper. Oh, wait, I think I got a little off my list.

Right now, I'm in second edits on my horror story "Once Upon a December Nightmare" that is being published by Wild Child Publishing.

From the first edits, the story is much better than before, but it needs "beefing up" to use my editor Zetta's words. I do completely agree, and the main problem with the story is the characters. They still sound too much like the same as each other.

I received the edits on Thursday, and I read over the notes and the edits/suggestions. I've been pondering them since Thursday, although I haven't actually opened the document back up to begin fixing what needs to be fixed and beefing up the story.

As I mentioned, the main problem so far is the characters, and I've been thinking a lot about them. I realized my problem with them. The story is loosely based on real life events that happened to me and three friends. I've been thinking of the characters as the real life people when I realized it was a big mistake to do so. These are characters, not real people. These characters have lives and distinctions completely different from the real people that inspired the story. I forgot that. Perhaps it was my inexperience as a writer or just a mental block, I don't know, but I had to stop thinking of the story as what really happened and think of it as a story. Sounds simple, right? Well, not exactly.

So, I'm doing something I've never done before with my characters. I'm interviewing them. The next couple days, I plan to write out questions and have the characters answer them in their own words. I'll be their therapist, of sorts. And, all characters will be interviewed from the four main characters (Cassie, James, Denise, and Mary) to the epilogue characters (John and Cara) to even the monster. Well, I might have to go through a monster translator to do that interview, but we're going to do it, as well. And, yes, I'm aware it sounds a little crazy and multiple personality of me, but trust me, I'm a writer, so it's not crazy, I think. I've been thinking about questions and what each character might say in my head, but I have to write it down (or type it up) to get a feel for them on the keyboard. I hope by Thursday I can crack open the manuscript and be able to write as each character and beef the story up. As a vegetarian, I'm usually against beef, but this time, it'll be vegetarian beef. By Friday or Monday, I hope to be able to send my second edits to my editor. I'm crossing my fingers that it'll be ready to go to proofing and won't need third edits. Of course, if it does, then I'll do that, as well.

I'll let you know how the process turns out.

As a side note, I wrote a review on "The Beauty Killer" series by Chelsea Cain. You can read it here.


Aubrie said...

I love the picture of your book on the sidebar! It makes me excited for when it comes out.

I've heard of character interviews, but never tried them. You'll have to tell us if it works!

Vegetarian beef...too funny. I actually eat the stuff. It makes very good meatballs without the meat!

Cherie Reich said...

I was looking at other people's blogs, and I decided to put up the cover for my story on the side. It took a little figuring out, but I like it. :)

I'll let everyone know. I have them in my head, but I think I'd feel better if I wrote them down.

I eat vegetarian beef, too! It's yummy.

Lisa Rusczyk said...

Monster translator. Haha.

My stomach hurts from eating hamburgers last night. I should go back to vege cuisine like I used to do - mainly for stomach reasons, but I feel guilty too.

The interviews sound fun. I've given a lot of thought to story versus real people too. I think in genre writing, you always want characters, but in more literary or mainstream venues, you want a mix of character and real.

Cherie Reich said...

Aww! Hope your stomach feels better, Lisa. I like being a vegetarian, although there are times it makes it difficult to order at some restaurants. I still want to try a Big Mac and McDonalds sometime, minus the hamburgers, but I'm afraid they'll look at me weird. LOL!

The interviews are fun so far. I think I'm looking forward to doing the monster one the best. I think all characters should feel real, no matter what they are, but this story was throwing me off when I kept thinking of them as the real people from the real story that happened instead of characters from the new fictional horror story I wrote. I'm correcting that mistake, I hope. *crosses fingers*