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mary AT mary-holland.com

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Previous Posts
Sunday
Dec142014

The Dog of Pel is Done

The first pass, anyway. Two and a half years of work mercifully not down the drain. It made a nice birthday gift from me to me.

Depending on how you count, it's either 94,000 words if you go by Microsoft Word or 80,000 words using the classic editorial 250 words per page. I prefer the actual Word count. I expect the final version will be over 100,000. There are some sections I need to expand and of course I need to edit, chop, change, clarify, and add more color and life and descriptions. I rushed a bit through the final 50 pages so I expect the last bit to need more work than the first. One of my villains, a nasty treacherous person of unspecified gender, had a very skimpy death scene and I certainly can't let him/her get away with that. More blood! More suffering!

I've a busy week ahead so the manuscript can sit and marinade for a while. The back part of my brain, the part that plots, wants to slide in another character even at this late stage. It's possible but I'm not sure it's necessary; I'll think about that.

In the meantime, have a Merry Christmas or whichever holiday is the flavor of your choice, and a Happy New Year!

Sunday
Oct052014

Fun in Our Work

Yes, it's been a while since I updated this blog, but give me a choice between blogging and making progress on The Dog of Pel and you guessed it.

I've combed through the existing manuscript, removed, changed, modified, and added all sorts of text, and sent the revised opus off to my beta readers. I'm working on the final chapters and thinking about the END, which is marvelous. Choices have been made. By me. I've made choices, finally, and I must tell you I've never worked on anything with so many possible ways to go. The beta readers (bless them) will tell me if I made the right choices so far, although I was very mean and left them suspended in mid-scene.

For this one, I think I am springing for an editor. A proper editorial critique by someone I respect who gets what I am attempting to do. The manuscript needs it, and several readers have said the others could have used one, so this time around it will get it.

I'm very excited at the prospect. I'm at least three months, maybe more, away from finishing and sending the final product off to an editor, but I'm looking forward to it. Also, I have to chose an editor, get on their schedule, and pay them dollars, but I'm even looking forward to the process.

With indie publishing, if I have to do all the work and wear all the hats, I get to have all the fun. It's only fair.

 

Thursday
Aug142014

Progress on The Dog of Pel

I'm writing steadily on The Dog of Pel. Current word count, as of today, is 75,000. I've accepted this one isn't going to move quickly but it IS moving. My best guess for the final total—and this is a total guess—is between 100,000 and 110,000.

I've outlined to the end of the story at least three times and no sooner do I get my head into the writing than the story takes off in another direction. So the outlines are more like vague guidelines. Another image that reoccurs: I'm crossing a very rapid stream, jumping from stone to stone. I can only see one or at the most two stones ahead at any time.

I can tell the end of the first draft is coming because I'm making a list of all the revisions I have to encorporate in the second draft. But 'first draft' is a little misleading since I've been revising all along and parts of the story have a polished feel.

Anyway, that's what I've been doing. As I said, progress.