First, I have some winners to announce:
PJ, signed copies of Grimspace & Wanderlust
Kimberly B, her choice of any single book from the sidebar
Email me with your mailing info, ladies. It's ann.aguirre at gmail.com.
Now that's taken care of, I'm going to talk a little bit about where I am in my work. I've finished my final revisions on Doubleblind and it's back in my editor's hands again. That means I'm back to Killbox, working on getting it polished before my March 15 deadline. I have plenty of time, right? But here's the thing. It's harder to revise your own work than it might sound.
It took me a while to make the notes on what needed addressing. Sometimes I don't see the plotholes because I have the whole big picture in my head, so what looks like a totally dangling thread is something I'm actually going to pick up in book six. Sometimes I don't give enough details for this to be made clear, and my editor tells me what I need to rectify that. Doing that myself, before anyone else has seen it, is a bit hard, but I don't let anyone read my first drafts. I always do at least one round of revision before anyone gets to read my work. That includes my beta reader.
After a great deal of fretting and pondering, I've managed to make a list of things that need addressing in Killbox. There are six things on it. Unfortunately, once I know what needs fixing, I don't magically receive insight on how to best go about that. Do I need a whole new scene? A new chapter? Will a few lines be adequate to flesh it out better? Right now, I'm not sure. And sometimes I can't remember what I meant to do instead of what I did do, and I'll find a plot point that doesn't wholly make sense, but I know there's a reason for it. If I could just remember the motivation / setup, I would include that, and make sense of the whole thing as part of the larger story arc.
I do make notes as I write about aspects I think need work, but it can't be comprehensive. As you're writing a book, doing bits of it every day, you sometimes lose sight of the big picture. You're just focusing on today's puzzle pieces, and it's not until later, after it's done, that you begin to see the whole again. Turning a rough draft into a polished final can be a harrowing experience. What's your process for revisions? If you're a reader, not a writer, do you have any hobbies that require you to go back and fix what you've already done?