On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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Location: Denver, United States

RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Saturday, June 30, 2007

First Drafts

I have not finished Keepers of the Flame yet, though the end continues to be maddeningly in sight. I revised my list, then lost it for a few minutes yesterday and was panicked because it was handwritten and I hadn't duplicated it anywhere -- which was immediately rectified upon finding buried under other papers on my dining room.

So the scenes to finish the book are painstakingly written and marked out. Problem is, when I write, I know I have to add a little of this or that -- another scene that is not on the list. So I can do three scenes a day, but if they aren't on my list it's almost as if they don't count...

Anyway I did 4000+ words today (Friday, this will go up Saturday) in spurts. I think what really saves my hide is that I write a relatively clean draft. I TRY to just zoom along and not give any thought to craft or word choice but it doesn't often happen. I may have to cut, I may have to add, I may have to tinker, but usually the scenes are pretty clean. So far (knocking on wood) I haven't had to do any major revision after I've sent the book in. Some fair amount after reader comment, but nothing that took me more than a few days.

I am hoping this continues.

Since I haven't put the chapters together, I don't even have a rough estimate for how long this book is, but I'm pretty sure it must be running long. I tell myself over and over again just to write the scenes and put them together and THEN cut when necessary, but I keep second-guessing myself, and trying to make sense of it all in my head.

I DO think that I have made real progress. I'd like to turn it in before RWA but that isn't looking good. So I may have a draft I take with me and mark up and revise. Worse comes to worse, they get the draft as is.

Only 9:30pm and I'm writing this for tomorrow, but I've been up since 5:45 and have done those words, so I'm beat and heading for bed, and since I'm so tired, I'm a little blue, hope it doesn't show too much.

Read another book by the author I spoke about yesterday. Again the ending was abrupt and not quite satisfying, left a thread hanging accidentally or on purpose. I think it will be a while before I buy the author again, which is a shame because there were lines that made me laugh and laugh, but an ending really has to nail the book.

May your escape into the zone today.


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