I can finally, quite happily, say that the major edits for Mercury & Murder are now done! It took a string of late nights this past week and some big chunks of time this weekend. I am feeling a little tired and a lot stoked because I needed to hit this milestone by this weekend to stay on track for a March 21st publication.
The big challenge that I was having is that wanted to work in a plot twist. But, I wanted to do it in a way that wouldn’t require another significant rewrite (the time to publish is nigh). I had been beating my head against it for weeks and after staring at it for two nights this week, I set it aside to work on the minor edits. As I was going through the minor edits, I saw a spot where I could work in a little more background on some of the characters and then inspiration hit. I saw how I could work in a little more background and a small, yet manageable plot twist. I bounced the idea off a trusted reader and got two thumbs up. So in it went and on I went. The nice thing is that it also gave me a little more material to improve the reveal at the end of the novel. I felt pretty good about the changes.
As a minor aside, in the midst of the writer’s high from making some good changes, I also had to fight off the urge to keep looking for additional things I could “improve.” That would have plummeted me into another round of rewrites. Silly writer! Thankfully, I avoided that and moved on.
So now I’ve got the book copied into its final format and I am going to start doing a final read through. I like to read it out loud to see how it sounds. Hearing it helps me to find things that need tweaked. Since I am a slow reader and an even slower tweaker, I imagine this will take me a few weeks (give or take). My goal is three weeks, so that I can (maybe) get the first printed copy before I publish. But if it’s four weeks, I’ll just do it all at once again. Right now, publishing it 3/21 is the most important goal.
My other next big step is to improve my synopsis so that I can send that off to Abel Valdivia to finalize the book jacket. And of course, it is far easier to market a forthcoming book with a finalized synopsis than without one.
Check back for progress on all of this. 26 Days To Go!