Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Aging a story to perfection

      Finished my newest middle grade sci/fi novel, INSECTLAND yesterday and now it’s off to get its cover. I am using my usual ebook cover person, Judy Bullard. This is a book I started in January of 1997 and have been tweaking ever since. It’s funny how some novels can be written in a few months while others, like this one, can take years.

     Actually, I think I need to clarify something here. It didn’t take me this long to write the book, I actually wrote the book in four months back in 1997, it’s taken me this long to consider the book finished. I believe there is a big difference between finishing a book and a book being finished. Not much of the basic plot of this story has changed over the years it’s more the details, the characterization, and the cool little subplots that make a story hard to put down that I’ve changed. For me, saying a book is finally finished means I have no more desire to read it and look for corrections. And that’s huge, because I’m a perfectionist when it comes to telling a tale.

     I sometimes let people read what I call my drafts, but some would definitely call completed novels, just to see how they react. If it’s mostly positive, I’ll continue and consider the manuscript a work in progress. Which means it could be anywhere from a few weeks to more than a decade before it’s available for sale. But as they say, stories, like fine wine, can take a long time to mature.