Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Timing. I Don't Have Any.

You know how sometimes all you want to do is fire off a quick query before you settle in to concentrate on some different project, but you suddenly see how you might restructure large chunks of the book to make it move faster, which might or might not make it more saleable?

Yeah, well, that's where I am with Len. I'm also supposed to be working on a pitch line for Nightmare in Shining Armor and reading up on Texas/border history and folklore so I can hold my own at WorldCon. But I'm wondering if maybe I should start with the shots Len hears, flash back a bit to leaving home and Maudie's rejection, reveal all that in bits and pieces. Basically start at the end of chapter three and spread the first two chapters out to appear as internal reflections during the slow bits of Len getting from Point A to Point B.

Because the problem I have over and over is that, told linearly, the first two chapters don't mesh well with the main action of the book. The characters in them don't even appear again till the final chapter when she runs into her brother at the State Fair. I'm not certain that this is a weakness in the book in any absolute, objective sense; but I'm certain it's a characteristic of the book that makes it harder to sell to a person who got 150 new queries today and still has 20 she didn't get to yesterday. I'm also certain it doesn't hurt anything to experiment with it - the old version will still be there, after all. So I'll be doing it, but I have to stop myself from sliding right into it. This is a full-focus job.

And the pitch line for Nightmare is as fun as ever. At the moment it reads: Galen drinks foster sister Bethany's blood to drain the bad stuff out of her life; but their shared fantasy deteriorates even as it comes true when Galen's called on to slay a vampire. Pretty sure that sucks. Which isn't as big an asset in the genre as you'd think.


  1. I did that with my latest WIP. I restarted with the 3rd chapter, changed POV and wove the first two chapters into the book at later times. It was like that was how the book was supposed to be written.

  2. I think I see how it would work, to, and how to do it. Except I'm supposed to be doing something else. On the other hand - who gets to say what I'm supposed to be doing, except me? Hmmmm....