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Writing update February 6, 2009

Posted by thejinx in aurius, enduring chaos, halcyon, writing.
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More responses to submissions today than I’ve ever received before!

Both of them rejections.

The second publisher to which I submitted Aurius for publication does not think it can sell the story.  Not quite as polite as my first rejection letter – it may have been a form letter that’s been in the files for decades, but there’s something satisfying about the line, “Thank you for giving us the opportunity to read your work” – but honestly, I wasn’t expecting a response at all from this publisher.  According to the estimates on their website, I should have received a response last August.

But, that means that it’s off of other people’s desks and I can focus my attention on a publisher whose submission requirements suit Aurius better.  And, it gives me closure that can spur me into crafting a better pitch for it.  I’ll admit it; Aurius works better as a complete novel.  The opening chapter or so isn’t the strongest way to sell it.  The fact that the publisher to which I’m looking now accepts only complete manuscripts is encouraging.

At the moment, Halcyon is complete.  It needs a few more read-throughs, with some time to sit in between, and perhaps some feedback from other readers, before I can truly call it complete.  But, my edits were driven by and focused on the Amazon.com Breakthrough Novel Award, the submissions process of which is currently open.

I entered Halcyon into the contest Monday, just as it is.  I’ve spent some time pondering over various aspects of the contest entry through the week and have altered it as such, but now, I’m letting it go.  It is entered; it shall stay that way.  Wish me luck.

Last year, I believe I took something of a break from writing after I completed Aurius.  I took the time to go through those extra read-throughs and time to stew, as I didn’t have a contest to enter at the time, and when I deemed the story fully complete, I basked in the satisfaction of completion briefly.

Since I’ve been focusing on Halcyon non-stop since I began writing it in November, however, I didn’t have any breaks as precedent to take time off from writing, and to not be writing simply didn’t feel right.  So, due primarily to recent inspiration and brainstorming, I immediately delved back into The Fire Within.  This is the revise/rewrite of my first truly completed novel – which was only two years ago – which I had begun last spring, but eventually set aside as fundamental story issues remained unresolved and inspiration flowed in for Eyes of a Dragon, my first attempted novel.  I’m still much farther along in Eyes than TFW, and though I am mildly disappointed that I’m not working on the former, I’m enjoying getting back into the latter.

It’s going pretty well so far, considering I only got up to the fourth chapter before I decided my revisions could be improved upon.  The entire chapter has been rewritten this week, taking only parts of one scene from the previous incarnation, and I am working my way back up to chapter five, which shall now be chapter six.

I was concerned with the length of the story when I was writing it initially, but its 115,000 words or so don’t come close to the roughly 200,000 words of some of my favourite novels – possibly more, Mistborn was a hefty read and its sequel is even longer – so, this time, I’m going to allow the story as much time as it needs to get where it’s going.  And I’m going to enjoy the ride along the way.

In any case, I don’t think traditional publication is an avenue I can necessarily explore for TFW, as for all practical purposes, it has already been published.  This whole “professional publication” idea is a relatively new one for me.  But no matter.  I’m not doing this for money, and my only desire is for my work to be read.  I had to start an account with CreateSpace for ABNA, anyway; perhaps when I’m done with the novel I’ll make use of it.

For now, I have a lot of writing to do to get to that point.

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