Is a Book Ever Really Done?

Way back in 2011, I blogged about the Dynamism of Writing, which takes many forms. I concentrated mostly on the ability of a project to take over the story from my conscious brain, but touched on another aspect as well, and that’s the “doneness” of a book. As I wrote back then, I think I could look at one of my books every day for a year and probably think there were 365 different ways to make it better (sometimes changing things back to what they were before I changed them!). Even our illustrious lady leader, K.S. Brooks, wrote about the wisdom of letting a book sit and looking at it with fresh eyes before publishing.

I don't remember that part!
I don’t remember that part!

This whole issue was brought to my unhappy attention when I began to re-read one of my older books. First published 25 years ago, it’s one of my favorites and I do re-read it periodically just because I enjoy it so much. When the original publisher felt it had had its run, they let the rights revert back to me and I published it through iUniverse (the only game in town at the time), then years later cancelled my contract with them and republished it through CreateSpace. At both of these junctures, I went back through the book and made minute changes, caught a few typos and pronounced it good.

So imagine my surprise when I started reading it recently and found within the first few pages a glaring misspelling! Ack! Of course then the reading-for-fun immediately turned to proofreading, and I’ve found many things that I’ll change, a handful of typos but also—I swear—things that I don’t think I would ever do! Where do those come from? Did someone edit my book?  Who’s hacked into my Kindle and changed things? (Probably the same person who somehow gets into my DVD collection and adds new scenes to movies I’ve watched a dozen times before!)

Coincidentally in a recent discussion, another author friend asked the question, “Is a book ever really done?” Continue reading “Is a Book Ever Really Done?”

On Track With Destiny

TrainRegardless of your beliefs ‒ justify it in whatever way you have to ‒ if you stick to a particular path long enough the universe is likely to tap you on the shoulder one day and say, ‘Tag! You’re it!’

Oftentimes, beforehand, you are unaware that things are about to change. Be it good, bad or indifferent; stay on the same track long enough and you are going to collide with the train of destiny. Continue reading “On Track With Destiny”

From Inspiration to Publication

TD1With the assistance of my trusty editor/partner in crime and beloved wife, Zoë Lake, I conducted a writer’s workshop seminar on the first of June this year. This Devonport Writers Workshop group, organised by Fay Forbes, has been running consistently, September through May, every year for the past eighteen years and each year the workshop participants produce an anthology of their work: poetry, essays, flash fictions, slice of life short stories and much more. Within this diverse group of individuals: school teachers, bush poets, business men and women, and housewives, who write for the sheer joy of writing, are many talented writers; some of whom have been published. Continue reading “From Inspiration to Publication”

Is Your Writing Bloated?

quillOne of the hallmarks of being a pantster is that we like to be surprised – by the plot, and our own characters. We love the sense of excitement, and adventure, that comes from not knowing what’s around the next bend.

Sadly, not all surprises are pleasant. One of the big drawbacks of being a free-wheeling, I-don’t-know-what-happens-next type of writer is that we often write ourselves into a corner, or so far off track that the original story becomes lost. Or sometimes <<shock horror>> we just end up with …bloat. Continue reading “Is Your Writing Bloated?”