Thursday, February 25, 2010

My Manuscript - Did I Do Enough?

After working so long on my manuscript, it feels as if there's a void. After a rush to make changes requested by my publisher, I'm in that waiting phase while the editor goes over it with a fine tooth comb. Unfortunately, that gives me time to think.

Did I do enough?

I keep thinking back to the action scenes. Did I make them tense enough? Did I balance the description well enough that the scenes flow without a halt in the action?

I'm not an overly descriptive writer, so while the action scenes might be okay, I wonder about my characters. Was I too skimpy on visual descriptions? Did I make each one unique?

It's tough not to pull up the manuscript on my computer and stare at it. I'm sure I'd want to change some things. Pointless to do that right now.

The contract is for one book, but what if they want a sequel? Crap, I hadn't thought beyond the ending! I'm not crazy about movie sequels, so I didn't plan for a book sequel. And at this point, I have no idea where the story would go, either.

Damn, I bet I'm over-thinking all of this, aren't I?


JournoMich said...

You are totally over-thinking it, but that is normal! How could you not? What an exciting (and nerve-racking) time. Trust in your editor and let yourself go. You can either forget totally about the book process (easier said than done, I know), or start on an entirely new one. Go a different route and see where it takes you. Maybe that'll get your mind off of this one and take you down a new path to the next great Alex J. Cavanaugh series.

So excited for you! Have I given you the completed MS award yet? You are so deserving.


Unknown said...

Breathe Alex!

You are over-thinking, but it IS very normal. Hey, your editor may read this post and gain a little insight on a few things to look for! Don't worry! Editing is for the purpose of not only finding mistakes, but knowing when the scene doesn't flow right or needs a little work, and then you'll have the opportunity to fine-tune it.

You've accomplished more than one MAJOR feat! Writing the book, finding a publisher – and an editor. You're on your way! Relax a little and enjoy it! :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks Michele and Crystal. Yeah, I'm over-thinking. And I don't tend to think much, either!

Michele, didn't know about that award?

The Old Silly said...

Fear not, 'tis quite normal, your fears and over-thinking. I'm overall very happy with my published books, but when I read them now I STILL spot things I think I could've made better, lol. But you move on, write the next book. Accept your work as a statement of your art at that given point in your life.

Marvin D Wilson

Helen Ginger said...

Yep. Take a breath. Let the rising panic wash away. If they ask for a second, you will write it. You can write it. You are the brains and soul. And it sounds like you're doing a great job.

Straight From Hel

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks, Helen.

And Marvin, I like that assessment.

Creative Chronicler said...

Even though you may be over-thinking it, I think it's normal for a writer to do that. especially when you're just starting out. I haven't even finihsed my book yet, btu I do the same thing with my Ember posts.

Creative Chronicler said...

BTW- as a commenter on the interview for Andy Parker- Prophecy of Power, I have a PDF version of the book to send you if you send me your email address.

DEZMOND said...

sometimes it's just better to relax and see what the time will bring, you will think about the sequel and new stories when the time is ripe.
And now that you know descriptions are your weaker side you will know how to focus more on that in your new books. Just relax, learn from your experiences and use the knowledge in the future.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks, on both accounts, CC!

Dez, I love LOTR, but I didn't want to bog my book down with too much description. Sci-fi readers want action, and since only half of the book is action, I kept the other stuff bare bones. Guess I'll find out if that worked or if I need to do more for the next book.

DEZMOND said...

I understand what you are saying. I was thinking more of the character description rather than set description. You need to have that in order for your readers to feel a connection with the characters by visualizing them. Being able to imagine the warmth, coldness or whatever the surroundings are like is also important otherwise a book can seem grayish or impersonal.
That's usually what makes a book different from others, or more special - the world that you create through descriptions whether it's inner or outer world.

Since you've said you made more of an action story - is it like a film? :)) The best writes are those which visualize each sentence and episode as a movie scene and write it that way :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Half is action. It's not Aliens, that's for sure! It focuses a lot on the two main characters, their interaction. But I visualized the whole thing, like a movie in my head, before I wrote. I think it would be an interesting film, but hey, I'm not Hollywood.
Maybe I should consider screenwriting?

Adele said...

see although I don't write, this is why I always preferred exams to coursework. Coursework I would hand in and then start this process of fussing. Exams, by the time you are in there you've already done all you can do no point worrying till results day.
Good luck pet.