Archive for the ‘Creative Process’ Category

Guest Editor Carter Higgins: How to Tackle a Big Revision

posted 4/18/16

Dear Editor…

From a practical (logistical) standpoint, do you have any advice for how to tackle a large revision of a manuscript I haven’t read in over a year? I’ve just had it professionally edited. I’m thinking I’ll read through those edits, then print out the manuscript and read the whole thing. And make changes as I go? Or read it through once and then go through again and make changes? Or read it electronically and then make changes and then print it out? I just can’t decide quite how to approach it.

Sincerely,
J.

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re: Bad Idea for Multiple POVs to Alternate Between 1st and 3rd Person?

posted 3/1/16

Dear Editor…

I’m beginning work on a YA thriller. I plan to use multiple POVs. It feels right to use 1st person when my protagonist is telling the story, but 3rd person feels right for everyone else. Do you think it’s okay to switch back and forth or would that bother readers? I plan to identify the person whose POV we’re getting at the beginning of each chapter.

Sincerely,
T.

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Re: How to Not Annoy Readers?

posted 1/6/16

Dear Editor…

I have a story idea: Two strangers’ lives tragically collide in a hit & run accident, leaving the DRIVER with haunting visions of the VICTIM. Driver’s visions of Victim become more desperate and her guilt more debilitating, so she decides to return to save Victim—and herself. My question: What do you think of this non-traditional structure: Book 1: Victim’s POV pre-crash; Book 2: Driver’s POV post crash; Book 3: Victim’s POV & resolution of Driver’s story. I worry about leaving Victim’s story in limbo for all of BOOK 2. Readers won’t know if the protagonist they just spent 100 pages with is dead or alive. Is that enthralling, or just plain irritating? I know I could do alternating POV chapters, but I don’t care for that style. Ideas?

Thanks!
Plotting Author

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re: Making the Dream Happen

posted 7/29/15

Dear Readers…

Today’s is a special post—an update from a DearEditor.com reader who feared the dream of being a Writer was unattainable due to struggles with a mental illness that saps self-confidence. You supported JC with your comments, your suggestions, and your own stories of struggling for your dreams. With JC’s permission, then, I share with you the note that made my day.

The Editor

 

 

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re: Getting Past the Blank Page

posted 7/7/15

Dear Editor…

I really want to write a novel, and I have a couple of ideas, but once I sit down at the computer and try to write, I end up staring at a blank page. I’ve looked online for ideas for motivation, but nothing has worked. Suggestions?

Sincerely,
Foiled by the Blank Page

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re: Word Count Intimidation

posted 4/14/15

Dear Editor…

As I understand it, a young adult novel needs to have a word count of between 40,000 and 60,000 words. The thought of having to write that much paralyses me at word one. I don’t know how I’ll be able to write that much, how I’ll be able to stretch my story and whether I may be wasting my time. What should I do?

Sincerely,
JC

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re: My WIP Is Giving Me Nightmares

posted 1/27/15

Dear Editor…

I’m having seconds thoughts about continuing the psychological thriller I’m writing. Maybe it isn’t the right time for it, I’m not sure. But I feel it is affecting me. By this I mean that the story itself is giving me anxiety and causing unsettling dreams. I don’t want to spend the next several months having nightmares. I feel frustrated, I’m not sure what to do, after all this time brainstorming. It isn’t the writing, I’m quite happy with the first 2K words. I don’t want to stop for the wrong reasons, or because I don’t want to get out of my comfort zone. But somehow I feel this is different from other thrillers I’ve written. Maybe I need to work on something lighter at the moment? How do I find out? How do I know for sure? Your thoughts and advice?

Pandora

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re: Does Paragraph Length Matter?

posted 10/9/14

Dear Editor…

Do paragraphs have to be the same size?

Sincerely,
Adele

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re: My Editor Doesn’t “Get” My Project — What Now?

posted 10/3/14

Dear Editor…

I’m worried about stepping on toes. I have an editor, and have published a number of books. She’s not quite “getting” my latest project, though. I have her revision suggestions, but I don’t agree with them at all. She hasn’t acquired the book, so I want to try submitting it elsewhere. Do I tell her? Will she be angry with me? What’s the protocol?

Sincerely,
Trying to Tread Carefully

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re: Does My Mental Illness Mean Writing Is a Bad Idea?

posted 5/22/14

Dear Editor…

My life is stressful due to suffering from mental illness and that clearly brings with it more negativity and self-doubt than average. As I’m socially isolated, research is a nightmare too and I feel like being a Writer is the worst thing I could attempt. As such, I sometimes feel like its a massive mistake to start down that path. What do you think?

Thanks,
JC

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