Started the revision process for the second book this past week after letting it sit for about a month. I noticed a difference in my attitude between the first revisions of Ghost Bully, and I’m pleasantly surprised.
I’ll never forget writing (in bold, mind you) The End on my first book. It was exhilarating—I’d done it. To quote Lisa Mangum, I was ready for my “Rich and Famous Contract,” where do I sign? Turns out it doesn’t work out like that for most people.
I’d read plenty of advice from other authors like Neil Gaiman or Jim Butcher that tell us to let our story sit for a while until we forget about it, so I did. Reading Ghost Bully again for the first time, I was horrified to see than many typos (in a dazzling variety), misspelled words, poor grammar, etc.… and that was before I knew what I was really doing wrong. I’d curse myself as I fixed the problems with the prose or dialogue, punching up jokes as I went along, and thinking I’d fixed everything by the time I finished.
Then cursed myself all over again on the next revision.
This past week, I’ve been more forgiving of myself. This time around, I’m treating the manuscript like a piece of scrap metal that needs to be beaten into shape and polished before sending it out into the world. It’s OK if jokes aren’t hitting right now, or parts aren’t connecting like I thought they might … or that I even forgot to put the connections in. I just need to fix the story. It’s a much healthier attitude, and I’m happy I’m in that place … at least at the moment.
I’m also thankful to have a writing group this go-round to give me direction and counsel on how the story is shaping up and ways to improve it.
There’s a lot of work to do between now and the release next year, but I’m excited about doing it. I’ll be revising this thing pretty much non-stop until the Fall, but it will be worth it, and I hope you enjoy it.
Also, watched Loaded, the second season of A Series of Unfortunate Events, and Nailed It this week on Netflix. Highly recommend along with The Magicians which ended their season with a bang this past week as well. Fun and well thought out story telling on that show, can’t wait for next season.