Finally, A Little Book News

Comparing your first born to your second child is sometimes a bit difficult not to do. When that second little one comes along we start right away by comparing their sleeping patterns. At least I know I did. Often times your first-born is more advanced when it comes to language because they have more of your undivided attention. But that doesn’t mean your second child is any less special. All children bring their own special gifts to the planet. It is what makes all of us unique. The fact that we sometimes compare the development of our children doesn’t make it right, but it doesn’t make it any less so.

I know, what does this have to do with my upcoming book? Nothing. Well, maybe something. Maybe just the fact that it’s difficult not to compare my first book to this next one, and even the whole process of publishing. For instance, Bitter, Sweet was relatively short even though, during the editing process, 5,000 words were added to the story. My upcoming book is a tad too long which means I have to make cuts this time. When my editor told me I had to add 5,000 words to Bitter, Sweet I cringed. I thought it was nearly impossible. However, editors don’t get to be editors by not knowing their stuff. Caitlin made suggestions as to where scenes could be added and slowly but surely the word count came up to where it needed to be. It wasn’t nearly as bad as I’d originally thought.

But cuts feel like, I don’t know, like an amputation of sorts. I’m mulling the idea of getting rid of a few very minor characters as well as a few small scenes. Writers often refer to it as “Killing off your darlings.” Might sound a bit extreme, but this late in the game it does feel extreme. I blame myself for being too wordy during the first edits. (I had an inkling this might be the case.) But laying blame doesn’t change what is. I still need to decide what can go and what can stay. Luckily, I’m not talking about 5,000 words this time, but still….

Work on the fall Nimbus catalogue is about to start. That means I’ll soon have a cover for my book. Contrary to what many people think, I’m not responsible for coming up with a cover, and thank goodness for that! You really wouldn’t want to see what I’d come up with. This doesn’t mean I won’t have any input. Once they come up with a cover, it’ll be sent my way for approval. If I hate it they’ll keep working at it. The day Caitlin sent me the cover for Bitter, Sweet I was afraid to open the file, wondering what I’d do if I absolutely hated it. Luckily, that wasn’t a problem. I loved it right away. I can’t imagine it being any different.

As for the title.

The title of “Bitter, Sweet,” was originally, “Bittersweet.” I remember when the comma was suggested. I immediately thought it looked weird. The concern with the title was there were so many other books on the market with bittersweet in them, and they wanted this one to stand out. They also thought the comma gave the book a more literary feel. The comma certainly seemed to do that. I mulled the idea over for a few days and then decided that the compromise didn’t feel that horrible, and really wasn’t all that different from the original. Of course, now I couldn’t imagine the title without a comma.

So what about the title of this book? During discussions with my editor, we’ve decided to make a slight adjustment to the title. Instead of “To Fly With a Broken Wing,” We’ve decided to change it to “Flying With a Broken Wing.” Just a small change, but I’d originally titled it, “Fly With a Broken Wing,” until it was pointed out that images of “a fly” were difficult to get past. Hadn’t thought of that when I originally titled it. Now it makes me giggle.

So yes, the book is making progress. We’re working toward publication. I know it feels really slow, and a lot of people have been telling me they’re getting anxious. I’m sure you can appreciate how I feel being the author and all. But patience is something all writers learn. In fact, it’s a must. As soon as I have a cover I’ll post.

So I’m off now to start making some cuts. Wish me luck!

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24 Comments

  1. every day you’re one step closer to publication. How wonderful.

    Reply
  2. Very exciting, Laura!!! :) :)

    I’ve seen authors go through this process, but in the end they’ve all come out saying their agent/editor knew what they were talking about as their story is all that much stronger after working through the changes suggested in their editorial letter. I suppose this is one reason it’s so important that we writers choose the right people to work with.

    Good luck cutting and editing. And your title is great!

    Reply
  3. Judi

     /  April 3, 2013

    Giggle; giggle, you say….I haven’t seen you let, I don’t think that you haven’t been giggleing. But that’s a good thing…I know your book is going to be a hit. And Bonnie and I are going to have fun putting your book launch together. Can’t wait…..Good Luck with your cuts.

    Reply
  4. Good luck I have to make some vicious cuts to my latest…it just takes too long to end. I thought so, and my daughter agreed. So — one more task. A difficult one, I agree.

    Reply
    • We get through it one way or the other, Hilary. Cuts are definitely more of a challenge than adding to what’s already there.

      Reply
  5. Loved reading about your progress, Laura! Good luck!!

    Reply
  6. Your editor was right about the ‘fly’! teehee. Have fun with the edits. I’m sure that once you get started you’ll find the right path to your goal.

    Reply
    • Yes, it sounds funny now but, in the beginning, whenever I said it, it felt like there should be a comma after fly. I didn’t even think of an insect…lol Considering this is a MG novel, I can see it being quite funny.

      Reply
  7. I find cutting words difficult, too, in fiction. And if I had to eliminate an entire character, it might be difficult. I might buck, but it often works out after the dust settles.

    Reply
    • The character is VERY minor, and one of the suggested scenes I’d taken out of one draft but ended up putting it back. That shouldn’t be too back. And who knows, sometimes deleted scenes, character, end up reincarnated

      Reply
  8. cluculzwriter

     /  April 3, 2013

    Haha, I never saw the insect until you pointed it out. Now I can’t get him out of my mind! I keep seeing a fly going around in circles. Haha. Not that funny.

    I’m the youngest in my family, and I’m pretty sure my brother would have liked to remain the youngest. LOL. Yes, he loves me now, but not so much when we were young. When my 2nd book came out, it didn’t hit me how important it was until its release date. I’m slow. My BF kept watching me out of the corner of her eye, because, she was more excited than I was. I’m not very excitable.

    Your fears are pretty normal, Laura. I know, normal is so boring. I’m still excited for you.

    Reply
    • Yeah, I tend to be so focussed I don’t think of other possibilities. Kind of like wearing blinders..lol! Glad your brother got used to you!

      Reply
  9. I do wish you luck Laura. Cutting out words is tough. I know, I usually have to do it as I tend to say too much. But after, I’m always glad because the story reads better. I like the new title! Look forward to seeing the cover.

    Reply
    • Yes, tough, but not impossible. I’ve been given some suggestions and I’m considering each one. Once I start I think it will be easier. And I still have hope for those cut scenes. :)

      Reply
  10. christicorbett

     /  April 4, 2013

    Laura,

    I love reading this “behind the scenes” of the publication process. Thanks for sharing and best wishes for smooth editing!

    Christi Corbett

    Reply
  11. I immediately liked the cover to “Bitter, Sweet” when I saw it. I’m sure the sibling’s will be a great cover, too. :)

    Reply
  12. It’s exciting to know this next birthing is getting close. And despite the “fly” bit, I really like the title. I’m sure you’ll manage to survive the chopping process and it will be a wonderful story. :)

    Reply
    • Thanks, Carol. You’ve always been so supportive of my work and I totally appreciate it. It’s getting closer even though it’s still months away. There seems no way to speed up this publishing business. We writers require patience every step of the way. :)

      Reply

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