Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Order of Things and Fatal Flaws

So.  A short while back I told you about how I'm working way too much out of necessity, getting home late, no time off, blah blah blah. I also said I 'd give you an update on what I'm really working on, you know, the important stuff: the writing I squeeze in whenever I'm not too tired or mind dead (this is when all you can handle is re-runs of Criminal Minds or whatever show you're currently following, like The Killing, which could be a post all itself...).

Anyway. I am currently making slow progress on an old project I haven't quite given up on: GRIMOIRE. Some of you might remember me talking about it. I queried it and got a lot of requests for partials and fulls but ultimately no takers. Why? I'd read the manuscript a million times and every time I came away thinking, damn, that's a great story! Why didn't agents like it enough to take it on?

And I finally figured out why. I found the fatal flaw. It was the order of things. Especially the order in which information was presented through dialogue. Either the conversation didn't track quite right or a question wasn't asked when it should've been. Fixing this flaw has involved a whole lot of cutting and pasting, rearranging dialogue, adjusting events...basically revising - again. But in the end, I hope I'll have something I can be truly proud to send off, or, perhaps even publish myself.

Meanwhile, ponder this question I heard on The Big Jab, a sports radio station my son listens to:

Would you rather keep your thumbs and go bald or keep your hair and lose your thumbs?

PS As of this writing, Dianne Salerni and I have two spots left for October's First Impressions. Interested in having your first page critiqued by two authors? Check out my sidebar for the details. 


40 comments:

  1. If it involves a lot of dialogue, then that's a lot of cutting and pasting. But at least you found it.
    I'll keep my thumbs, thanks. Hard to play guitar without them.
    And I just had my manuscript critiqued by four authors, so I'm good to go, thanks.

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    1. Yeah, I think I'd keep my thumbs, too.

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  2. Glad you found the sticky bits. That's progress.

    I'd rather be bald. It's just hair, and it's in my way when I bake. But when I bake, I use my thumbs.

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    1. Yeah, see I draw, so no thumbs would make that hard, not to mention a few other things.

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    2. For me too, on the drawing. And baking, cooking and all kinds of stuff where I use my thumb. Weird really, that anyone would pick thumb over hair.

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  3. That's awesome you were able to get enough distance on your story to figure out the changes it needed. And I'm vain enough to say I'd rather keep my hair than my thumbs. I only use them for the space bar when typing, so I'm pretty sure I could adjust. :P

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    Replies
    1. I think the distance helped me see what I didn't before.

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  4. Yeah, I figured out the fatal flaw in my historical paranormal manuscript too -- you know, the one you love -- Evie and Hodge. But darned if I've figured out how to fix it. Yet.

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    Replies
    1. I DO love Evie and Hodge and there has to be a way to make that story work.

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  5. I loved G; we'll, what I had read of it anyway. I'm glad you haven't given up on it. Here if you need anything.

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  6. I recently figured out the fatal flaw in my WIP. It's a big fix but at least I know what it is.
    Things are really difficult to do without thumbs.

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    Replies
    1. This feels like a big fix, too, but you're right; at least I can see what the problem is.

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  7. Definitely keep my thumbs!

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  8. Thumbs every time. I couldn't minister to the feline overlords in this house without them.
    Congratulations on finding, and fixing the problem with your work. Two huge steps.

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    1. Ha! I totally forgot about the feline overlords.

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  9. If I were a guy, the answer to that one would be easy... thumbs! I guess I can always invest in wigs... so thumbs!

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  10. Yeah, as Robin says, there are plenty of wigs. And knitted caps. And turbans. I'll keep my thumbs. I need them for knitting.

    I should give you my newly revised chapter 1. I just rewrote it. It's interesting how you can come back to a project after a while and see what younger you did not.

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    Replies
    1. I could wear a knitted cap, but it has to have stripes!

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  11. I'm glad you found your fatal flaw. It's good that you could recognize you had a problem and not blame the people who rejected your work.

    Love,
    Janie

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    Replies
    1. There's no point in blaming. I just haven't found the right agent yet.

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  12. Glad you found the flaw and you're on track to fix it! That's great news! I'm just in serious rough draft land with my fiction project so it's really not ready for a serious critique yet .. . it's still embarrassing to me at this point. I need my thumbs, and I like hats. :)

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    Replies
    1. I hear you; I'm always a little reluctant to share my beginning rough drafts. And hats are fun!

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  13. Good luck with your revision. Time away is always a good thing. Oh, and I'll keep my thumbs, thank you very much.

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    Replies
    1. I think we have a consensus on the thumbs, which almost everyone wants to keep.

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  14. I'm bald and gorgeous, thank you very much....

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  15. Isn't it wonderful that you not only located the problem, but are able to fix it! For me, identifying the problem and fixing it don't necessarily go hand in hand. Good luck to you!!

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    Replies
    1. well... yes. Having identified the problem, the fix is not exactly easy and it is most definitely going to be time consuming, but...I hope in the end it will make this story wicked good, instead of just good :)

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  16. Great news! Considering I'm already bald, I'd keep my thumbs, thank you.

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  17. Gosh. That's so hard to do, revising like that. It sounds like you're on the right track though.

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  18. These lose-lose questions always get me! I'd say I'd rather go bald because I'm a writer, so I need my thumbs. Plus...wigs!

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  19. Hope your rewrites and rearranging do the trick. The question was easy, I'd keep my thumbs. Hair is a decoration, thumbs have function.

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    1. Me, too! And I agree about the hair and thumbs.

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  20. Banned complain !! Complaining only causes life and mind become more severe. Enjoy the rhythm of the problems faced. No matter ga life, not a problem not learn, so enjoy it :)

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    ReplyDelete

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