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Prophecy Six Blog

Sharing My Unedited Writing Experiences & Life Experiences.

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self-publishing

SoLK’s Chapter Edits and Realizations

bookthreeupdate

Last update I talked about being done chapter three, this time I am done chapter four.

Not a huge success but I had to go back to make changes to the previous chapters to help make sense of what the later chapters are going to hold. I have mentioned before I’m not a planner when it comes to writing books.

I have a plan in the sense where I know where I want the story to end up but when it comes to chapters and details I have no freaking clue. I let the characters guide the story and allow their personalities to create the scenes.

For example:

I had originally planned for the story to begin with Liora hurrying to meet the King of the South as per Empress Mardina’s request… but something about that wasn’t right.

Mardina is a relatively kind woman with a protectiveness for the things she “owns” – like Liora. Liora is useful for La’reen with her abilities to see and predict things – and even more-so now that her talents of seeing are getting stronger. Mardina would be in fear of losing Liora to her cousin, and so wouldn’t permit Liora anywhere near Min’din during the King’s visit to La’reen.

As those of you who have read the previous books know, Liora isn’t the type to listen to someone when they say no. She lets her curiosity get the better of her and finds loop holes to get what she wants, (or just straight out does it without any regard of the punishment involved). In book three, one of those moments is seeing the Southern King. She doesn’t just do it because she wants to see what Min’din is like compared to Charn – his Northern counterpart – but wants to find out what Min’din knows about her peoples’ massacre.

The King wants to meet with Liora, not because he wants to meet the girl, but because she is a tool that can get him what he wants. Mardina’s downfall of showing off Liora like one of her prized possessions has come back to bite her in the butt by having someone in the court tell the Southern King that Mardina has a Seer, which in turn could help Min’din find answers about his son that no one else has been able to answer.

This complicated balance of personalities is what drives the first chapters.

Liora wants answers about her people and Min’din’s role in their deaths. Mardina wants to keep her new toy away from her cousin. Min’din wants answers about his son and the future of his country. Everyone has a want, and how they go about achieving it is very different.

So, when I originally started writing I tried to go with what I had planned and soon discovered I was writing the story and not my characters. As soon as I stepped back and basically said, “Liora, take the wheel”, the story began to develop into this complicated wonder I now have before me.

Compared to book two, book three is going to be filled with a lot of events intersecting and reacting with one another. Liora is becoming a player in the game of politics, and soon her actions are going to start affecting more than just herself or the Six. Book Three: Sons of Lost Kings, is going to be where Liora wakes up and realizes that one person can make an impact on their world, whether they want to or not.

Anyways… that was my writing realization of the day. 

Until next time – toodles!!

Nightmares of Editing

It has to be done but I’m dreading it.General Atmosphere - 2014 SXSW Music, Film + Interactive Festival

Editing.

Ugh… editing.

No, matter how much I love writing there are parts of it that irk me. I’ve done the easy part of writing the damn thing but now I have to go back to make necessary changes. This could be sentence structure, story flow, grammar, punctuation… and if you read my blog posts – which I tell you right now I don’t really edit – I need help in all of those listed.

Sometimes it’s funny when I re-read a section of my book and know exactly how my mood was.

“Ah, yes… chapter 5 and 6 must have been the days I got a proper amount of sleep. 7 to 10… was I writing drunk… I really need to stop that…”

So… yeah… necessary changes are necessary for my final written product.

Editing I understand is important. I was the kid in school told to edit my work all the time and didn’t… which could have meant a grade upgrade from a B average to a A average… but I know kids don’t listen to their teachers. I’ve been a teacher and you can go blue in the face trying to get a kid to listen to you but if they choose not to… well good luck. I would like to call that Karma by the way.

Now, with my focus at the moment on creative writing and self-publishing my work I have to pay attention to the process I dreaded all my life. Editing could change an okay book into a best-seller. Editing shows you’ve put time and effort into making sure your book reads well and flows well for your readers.

It took me 10 years but I appreciate editing even though I still hate it.

I honestly can’t believe this will be the second book I’ve written in less than a year that has entered this process. I actually can’t believe I’m willing to put myself through this torment for a second time…

Editing is pain people. It will all pay off in the end. When I am holding book two in my hands I will forget all the re-writing and re-reading that needed to be done to hold the final product. I’m also excited to think what you all think of the second book…

In truth – and I may be bias – I think the second book is better written and has more action. The characters are developed better and I think there is more suspense compared to book one… actually I know there is more suspense than book one. Liora is going to kick butt this book and gain new friends along her adventure.

Anywho, I have to go back to the dungeon of editing before I can send it off to be reviewed by my editor. Yes, I pre-edit my stuff… if I’m comfortable to send it to him that means it is close to being comfortable enough to get published.

That’s all for now.

Toodles. 🙂

 

3 Reasons to Make Your First Book Free

3reasons

Click the picture to find out what those three reasons are. 🙂

30 Day Writing Challenge: Day 24 – Hard Lesson

 

24

The Lesson You Learnt The Hard Way

Now, I’ve written about how hard it is to be a writer before in the past blog post Writing Is Hard… but today I am supposed to talk about a lesson that I learned the hard way.

Writing isn’t actually the hardest part of being a writer. Writing is a challenge. Writing makes you pull out your hair and scream to the sky asking for help from your ancestors to give you strength to continue on… but then you go back to writing because we’re all masochists and love causing ourselves pain…

Writing makes us over think, over analyze and lose sleep over the tiniest of pointless details but that is writing. Writing is hard.

I knew that from years of writing. I learnt that through writing and editing my book but that pain… that suffering doesn’t compare to publishing.

With writing you have control over your project. You know the outcome of the story. You understand your characters, setting, plot…

What you can’t predict is what will happen when you are finished with your work. You think – at least this was what my previous naive self thought – I publish my work online and that’s that. It will take care of itself. People will see my work, love it or hate it and
move on.

summerchild.jpgHA! What a fool I was!

Publishing feels amazing at first because your story is done. What you don’t consider is the work that comes after your book is done. It doesn’t matter if you’re with a publisher or your work is self-published, there’s still a lot of work to be done.

You now have to build your brand, you readership, manage your sales, find places to sell your work, find ways to sell your work… get/register your ISBNs with your country and send your work to your country’s Legal Library (self-publishing legal stuff for a Canadian at least).

Instead of reading about sentence structure and character development you’ve replaced that with Marketing 101 and Guru Publishing Posts. You need to learn to talk to people and talk about your book… which is a nightmare for a introvert. But come hell or high water you do what you can to get your book out there. Not because you want to but because you owe your work the right to be read. You owe your potential readers the right to find your work.

AND when a reader tells you that they love the story or they can’t wait for the next book, you realize it’s all worth it. That those nights staring at the ceiling trying to figure out who you need to email, call, ‘run into’ the next morning was all worth it. That those hours you spent reading blogs on marketing and searching for sites to sell your work wasn’t a waste of time. One by one you’ll grow your readers and the more you write/publish – you hope it’ll get easier. 🙂

That’s the hard lesson I recently learnt… but after all this hard work I’m still wanting to be a writer. As much as it keeps me up at night and forces me to learn about something I was never quite good at (marketing) I still can’t see myself doing anything else. So, if that’s not a sign I’m doing what I love… I don’t know what is. 🙂

It Takes Time

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Sometimes when you have written/ published something you need to remind yourself that Rome wasn’t built in a day. Even though you’ve completed your book, published it, and have a readership interested in it you’re not going to sell a million copies overnight. That is an unrealistic goal. You should be happy if your book is selling. You should be happy that people have taken interest in your work but instead you’re overwhelmed – dare I say… apathetic.

200_sWith hearing stories, reading blog posts, or articles on people going viral with their writing it’s hard to accept that what you’ve done is good. Actually, before you continue reading this give yourself a pat on the back because you deserve it. You’ve gotten this far and be proud of what you’ve achieved. Not many have gotten to the place you are. Writing isn’t as easy as everyone thinks.

Now let’s continue.

The reason you may be so apathetic to what you’ve done is due to how society perceives achievement. Like in middle school or high school popularity in writing is what we writers view as success. Maze Runner, Game of Thrones, Twilight, Harry Potter, Divergent, and Hunger Games have made wanting to be a writer popular and some part of us wouldn’t mind having our characters become the next Thomas or Katniss.

But, not every piece of writing is going to be popular right away. Some Game of Thrones booktimes the best things in the world take time. Shakespeare took a lifetime to become one of the greatest writers of history. Da Vinci took years… heck centuries for his talents to be recognized. Stoner, Kafka, Catch-22 and other now popular books took years to be recognized (more books listed HERE). Even the popular books mentioned in the paragraph above weren’t main stream until later one in their careers – I’m talking about you GoT (Book 1 published 1996).

So, why are you apathetic towards the hard work you’ve done? Why do you perceive the books you’ve sold as a failure?

Firstly, lets look at the word failure. To fail is to not be successful and so in that sense if your goal was to have people read your book and you have a person or people reading your book then you are not a failure. An epic book fail would mean not getting any interest in your book. In all manner of the word your book is not a failure. If your book made 10 sales it wouldn’t be a failure. If your book made 1 sale is wouldn’t be a failure because there is one person in this world reading your book. One person is reading a story that wouldn’t ac6a516d6df74c2fb4d7d9e6a98c1e66have existed if you hadn’t written it. Therefore as long as you have made more than zero sales your book is not a failure! And hey, if you haven’t gotten anyone reading your book you didn’t fail. You learned something and you take what you’ve learned to make something better or improve upon what you have already made. We all fail at one point but what we choose to do with that failure is what really shows what type of person you are. Take this experience and learn from it – don’t let it destroy your passion or your confidence.

Eventually your book will grow a larger readership – if you continue writing and bringing attention to it. We all have to start somewhere but in the world of social media where we get instant results it’s hard to remind yourself that what you’re doing may take time. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Most books aren’t written in an afternoon. Most dreams do take a lifetime. Not everything is instant… not everything happens at once. This is what you’ll have to keep reminding yourself of when you look at your book. That in time its popularity may grow. That its message will be shared.

Honestly, as much as you may like the thought of your book becoming the next best-seller that shouldn’t be the reason and probably isn’t the reason you wrote this book in the first place. This is a story you wanted to share. These are topics, characters, ideas you wanted the world to read about. You should write for you and publish for you – not anyone else.

So, calm down and take a breath. Admire the work that you MontreGousset001have done and the beautiful piece of writing you’ve created. You need to remember why you wrote that book and wanted to share it with the world. It’s a story you love and in time there will be like-minded people who will love it too.

But at the moment you have to remember – it takes time.

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