Book Reviews and Writing Tips

Book Reviews and Writing Tips

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Still revising my WIP

It's time to post again and sometimes I can’t think of anything at all useful to post on here.  I’m still too busy revising my WIP to put my mind on writing an intelligent post.

As some of you know, I’m doing this while trying to organize things toward my moving endeavor, deciding what to keep and what to part with.  The last couple of days I’ve been working on more rewrites than organizing.

On top of this, my husband sends me an ad about a cat that needs a home.  Oh geez!  I’m not one to send something like that too because you know where this will go.  Being the cat lover I am I always want to come to the rescue, especially after seeing the picture of this cute one-year-old baby.  He reminds me of a cat I had twenty years ago.  But that’s a story for another time and my other blog.  I’ve emailed the gal, so we’ll see if she still has him when she responds.

So back to my novel that my friend, Lisa, is critiquing for me.  I appreciate her help in bearing with me through this book that’s excessively long.  I’m wondering as I go through this thing if I should split it into two books.  I have about 150 double-spaced pages left to go on my rewrite and then I’ll to do a word search for some words I want to delete.  I’ve learned a lot by Lisa’s comments on my work.  It’s so important to have that other set of eyes.  Sometimes I can read the passage so many times that I skip right over the errors.

If you’re working on this now, some things to bear in mind are info dumps, which Lisa told me about right from the get-go.  They slow the story down and are only necessary in small chunks as the story moves along.  I’m not one to utilize an outline until after I write the book, except for keeping a Word doc of places and people in my book that I can reference.  With my mystery, I also added in all the murder evidence I would have to account for by the end of the book.  Otherwise, I’m not really an outline type of writer.

Another thing to keep in mind is POV.  This is another biggie for me as I’m doing this book in first person, my first attempt at this kind of writing.  I’m having fun with this now that I’ve got it all straight in my head, but I think you can do more using third person POV.  Because of the first person POV, some of my chapters are shorter than they would be in third person.  Maybe this isn’t ideal because you can’t use filler to make them longer.  Sometimes you really have to put on your thinking cap to come up with things that fit, aren’t redundant, and still move the story forward.

I usually write in third person, but I wanted to give a more personal feel to the story.  I think I can do that using first person.  This can be limiting at times, if you’re thinking about using it.

Another thing to bear in mind is “show not tell”.  We’ve all heard that many times.  However, it needs repeating because it’s better to have some description to draw the reader into the story.  This doesn’t have to be done everywhere, as long as you keep the telling part real short.  Think about the books you really love.  They would be boring with little or no description of the places, characters, and action in the story.  I’m good with description most of the time, but there are places I need to fix concerning this.

I really think I can read the book fifty times and still find something in there to rewrite.  That’s the nature of writing.  Nothing will ever be perfect in our eyes, but we can get it close if we try hard.

After I finish this rewrite, I want to get rid of the garbage (disposable) words.  I thought I had written them down and they are probably here somewhere on my desk, but right now there’s so much paper and many sticky notes all over.  I can’t lay my hands on it without going through everything, which I don’t have time for at the moment.

Then I remembered Lisa wrote a post on this last year, so I spent the last two hours looking for that post on her blog.  She listed all the garbage words that you can remove from your writing.  I couldn’t remember which month she posted it.  I’m linking to it here for those writers who need a reminder and are revising their work.  I don’t think Lisa will mind.  This is an excellent post to use when rewriting your WIP.

Please click on Lisa’s Djen Den to read this entire post.

Until next time, thank you for following me.  If you have any helpful writing hints, please feel free to post them in the comments.


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