A blog about our adventures becoming a published Indie Authors. Here you will find advice, humor, and stories about what we've learned on our journey, along with books reviews, as well as great advice from other authors we've met on our journey. It's a long road, but the things you'll see and experience along the way can be very interesting.
Today I'm following up on a topic I brought up in a previous entry where I talked about having started all over on "The Door". Originally this story was meant to be the 3rd novel in our Para-Earth Series, only I kept hitting one wall after another with "The Door" and not getting much farther with the story. It got so bad I realized way too much time was passing without a new book being released, so Helen and I went to work on "The Vampyre Blogs" books because we had a clearer vision of those stories.
But even during that interim, I'd go back to "The Door" and new progress would be made, but then another wall or distraction would come along. That is until recently when I've gone back to it with a vengeance and have been making some serious progress. The story is moving along nicely but there have been a few bumps in the road. Most of those difficulties I've been encountering lately have come from new shapes and directions the story is heading in. But there were a number of scenes I had already written or planned that I couldn't seem to let go of. I thought the story couldn't work without them and kept trying to make them fit. Only to wind up finding myself hitting another of those damn walls.
So what was the problem?
I was trying to stuff those 'precious' scenes into the story, even though they weren't needed anymore. It's not that the scenes weren't any good. Some of them were quite tense, exciting, and even funny. But there were problems with a number of them. For instance, one of my bugaboos when it comes to writing is that events or actions by the characters have to make sense. If one of them starts acting really stupid without a good reason, it drives me crazy. And as things were going, I was having a number of them behave in ways that made no sense. Oh I did try to rework the scene again and again to try and make it fit, but in the end the idea/scene really didn't belong anymore. And in the end, all I'd wound up doing was wasting a lot of time and energy without making any really progress with the story. So it was time to do the unthinkable...
I cut them out. As soon as I did, real progress started happening once more. Admittedly some those scenes that got cut had some good drama to them, but I already had a slew of good scenes that not only come together well but flow so perfectly. Furthermore, those scenes I removed will not really be missed. Especially, since I'm planning on building short stories around them instead.
Remember my golden rule, just because you remove it doesn't mean you trash it. Always save those scenes, you never know when they might be perfect for another project..
However I will tell you right now, it's not always easy to let an idea go. As I said earlier, I've been working on this book for over 4 years. I know the characters and I know where I want things to lead to, but in between there is so much that needs to happen. Unfortunately, I was trying to throw in too much.
So I've been taking several steps back with "The Door". I've been really thinking about behaviors, actions and making sure everything makes sense. For instance, Alex has been out of action in the hospital for a month after the battle in "The Bridge" (the first book in our series). But what has been happening with Veronica and her fellow police officers in that time period?
Originally I had an idea involving PTSD and Alex coming to everyone's the rescue after he got released from the hospital. But upon giving it some serious thought I asked myself "Does this really make sense? A whole month passing and no one tried to help the police? Why didn't Veronica do something about it, these are her coworkers and she's smart? Plus she recently met people in the first book who'd helped Alex with his PTSD as a result of a horrifying paranormal experience. She's smart. Wouldn't she reach out to those folks to help her friends/coworkers" The answer of course was HELL YES! So that's exactly what I'm doing.
And guess what? It's working.
Plus, there's still plenty of action and mysteries that Alex is still badly needed to help with. For one thing the police need to be sure that the creature and its protector, Cyrus Graham, didn't leave any other nasty surprises behind. And Alex is the only one the spirits of past victims are willing to reach out to.
But delving into those mysteries will lead to questions regarding to Cassandra's family history and another threat that has stalked her throughout the second book "The Ship". There are also revelations that will be uncovered that will link all these people to our vampyre Nathan (from "The Vampyre Blogs" portion of our series) creating new questions slowly bringing all the characters together for future tales.
However, most of this could not have happened had I not been willing to let go of scenes/ideas I didn't think the story could live without. Sometimes you have to make those tough choices for the good of not only the story you're working on but future ones as well.
It's a tough balancing act deciding what to keep and what to let go, but if you find yourself hitting wall after wall it may be time to make those tough calls.
Have any of you had similar experiences? How did you deal with it? Please share your thoughts and experiences in the comments section below.
Recently there's been a lot of discussion of Amazon Kindle's latest program... "Kindle Unlimited".
Now for those of you have heard but don't know a lot about it, here's a quick recap in a nutshell.
*Remember: this is only a brief overview and not an in-depth piece. I understand there are still some details to be ironed out*
With Kindle Unlimited, you pay $9.99 a month to have unlimited access to Kindle books through Amazon. You don't have to 'buy' the books, you simply have access to them. Sort of like a private library that you pay a monthly fee to have access to. Now considering there are literally thousands of books on Kindle this is a pretty good deal for consumers. You can sample and read any the books and decide if you actually want to purchase a copy for yourself in e-book or maybe go for an actual print copy, without wondering whether or not the book is to your taste.
So on the surface, this sounds pretty good right? So how does thi…
First I'd like to thank all the guest bloggers, authors, and reviewers who were so kind to supply our blog with posts. It gave me some much needed time to get some rest and help family members who had suffered a terrible loss. It also allowed us to get back to work on our anthology “The Vampyre Blogs – One Day At a Time” which will be coming out in early October, a perfect time for creepy stories and tales of encounters with strange beings. With only two stories left to be completed and edited, we will soon be lining up Beta-Readers and then doing our final edits. Work has also been progressing on “The Door” latest full-length novel in the Para-Earth Series, and “The Pass” the first installment in a brand new series co-written with Richard Caminiti.
In the meantime, I have been studying and purchasing the necessary equipment to begin audio-readings. As you can see below I've been slowly setting up a “Recording Studio” in our office/guest room.
Blogger’s Note: I know I promised the second entry about things I learned about putting together an anthology, but the bug we’ve been fighting turned into bronchitis, possibly bordering on pneumonia. So we’re both on heavy antibiotics which does not make for very sensible thinking or analyzing, much less writing. So please bear with us and hope you enjoy this latest book review. We hope to be back in the saddle very soon. Thank you.
"Ghost Hand" is a thrilling ride into a modern day reality, so like our everyday one, but with a twist... some people have 'Ghost Limbs'. It feels like the author took the concept of 'phantom limb syndrome', when someone suffers the loss of a limb yet still feels the missing appendage, and then made it into something more tangible in a unique way. The characters are born with what would have been a missing limb, except the limb IS there, only it's glowing and almost intangible at times. And sometimes, they seem to have a m…