The three novels in three months challenge continues. I’m nearly done with the second novel, Glass Bay, and wondering what to write for the third novel to carry me through August.
Part of the deal with the challenge is that Dean Wesley Smith will give feedback on the novels. What I guess I forgot was that Mr Smith won’t pull any punches. Won’t give any quarter. He does offer caveats (which I think all first readers should), that it’s just his opinion, his view and his taste. I know that some of the authors he enjoys reading, I find difficult and not at all to my own taste.
What he does bring to the table is decades of experience as a professional writer, with millions of copies of his books in print. Yeah, I should listen, even if it bruises my poor little ego.
The points he made about what didn’t work in the novel are basic things that frankly I should know after all the time I’ve been reading, writing and studying writing.
Being in the character’s head. Depth of setting. Appropriate imagery. (to paraphrase his comments). Probably, easy fixes, for the most part.
Right now, I’m taking those comments and making a big cycle back through the current novel (Glass Bay) and creatively looking for where I’ve made similar errors and deleting sections, or writing new sections. Yep. Glaringly obvious now.
Of course fixing is one thing. The really interesting test will be when I write the third novel and keep those concepts in my head the whole time.
Frankly, ego aside, that feedback was, if not like a complete writing course, the crystalization of writing courses, where all those concepts suddenly seem much clearer.
As Mr Smith would say, onward.
Glass Bay image © Claudio Arnese | Dreamstime, Ice Hunters image © Algol | Dreamstime.