Apparently First Reader is not the only resident who gets to have a say in regards to The War God’s Son. Sheffield the Cat had some incisive (incisors?) commentary on the lead to Chapter 4. You can see his commentary expressed with his usual directness. The green marks are from First Reader. There’s precedent, of course. The late great Early the Cat used to sit in my manuscript boxes, back when hardcopy was everything and I always printed out the day’s progress. I imagine to this day in some of my papers there are manuscripts with calico cat hair between the pages….
Oh right. Present day, if not present tense. As is pretty typical at this stage of the process, for my own part I have an alternating love/hate relationship with the text. Sometimes I just zip through revisions, and at others I can’t stand to look at it. Sometimes I think it’s among the best things I’ve ever done, at others, not so much. As I said, typical. The jury’s still out with First Reader, though she is quick to point out that my punctuation is atrocious (her word, not mine). I beg to differ. My punctuation is not atrocious. It’s commas, mostly. I think commas should do what I want them to do, and I put them where I darn well want. She says commas do what they are grammatically required to do, belong only where they are required to belong. I think this is a philosophical divide that we may never manage to bridge.
As for Sheffield, he pronounces Chapter 4 “chewy.” Something he can really get his teeth into.
Time for a blog post in which a lot is going on but almost nothing is, you know, actually happening. First Reader still has the manuscript for The War God’s Son and probably will for another week or two. Once she’s done I’ll be ready to look at the book again and possibly get the submission draft together. I would really like to get that done before the end of November, though realistically even if I do, that’s very close to the time that publishing shuts down for December, so it’s unlikely I’ll get a decision on the book until January at the earliest. The only reason I think it may be that soon is that the publisher knows the book’s on its way and might be able to expedite things. We’ll see.
Since it turns out my brain is still too fried from TWGS to write anything else for a bit, I’ve used the time to try and get the print version files of All the Gates of Hell ready instead, though I’ve hit a couple of snags with the formatting. That is, the template I’ve used twice before with no issues is now getting reported with errors that I don’t believe are errors. Computers are great, except when they aren’t. I’ll get it sorted out and put up a notice when the physical book is available, since I know not everyone is a big fan of ebooks. I am, but I also acknowledge that there’s just something special about a “real” book, and I don’t think they’re going away anytime soon, if ever. Provided the coming apocalypse leaves us with at least a Gutenberg-era level of technology. If we’re back to the stone age, all bets are off.
P.S. Yes, I know I misspelled “lama” in my last post. Or rather used the homonym rather than the proper word. Or was confusing the Dalai Lama with Wally Llama. My mind works that way sometimes.
In the proper usage of the word, not its current defilement. I simply mean that, upon receiving advice from First Reader that a certain character wasn’t important to the story I’d just written and should be cut out, I not only didn’t cut him out, I went the other way and added an entire extra scene starring you know who.
It’s not that I wasn’t listening to First Reader’s reaction. On the contrary, her reaction was the reason I did exactly the opposite of what she suggested. Continue reading →