Take time to deliberate, but when the time for action has arrived, stop thinking and go in.
- Napoleon

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Sundry Stuff

Over the weekend, I printed off the manuscript for RTL. 309 pages worth. I do it chapter by chapter, so it's not really all that difficult, but it's time-consuming. And after a while, the printer rhythm gets stuck in your head like some warped song. Bweep, bweep, zeep. After a while, even my husband was singing it.

Now some of you may wonder what in the heck I'm wasting all that paper and ink for, escpecially when it's 2008 and lord knows you can always edit on the screen. *shrug* Every once in a while, I have to see the work in print. Aside from the joy of holding a completed book in my hands, I need to step away from the screen to gain some objectivity about the story. For some reason, I catch my typos better, I'm better able to see the way the story fits together (and where it doesn't), and I gain the perspective of just another reader rather than the author.

Anyway, I promised myself I was just going to read through the book. No red pen. No jotted notes. Just read. Needless to say, I broke my promise on the first page. On the screen, it flows so well. In print, it was falling flat. I tried not to touch it, but after fighting the good fight to keep my promise, I got up and retrieved my red pen. I'm glad I did. I fixed some easy tweaks, and I can read without obsessing on the typos I'm missing.

Do you ever print your books? Why or why not?

On a completely different note, I received a rejection yesterday from the only big-name publisher I've ever submitted to. To be frank, I thought they forgot about me. Their lead-time said 4-6 months, and this was month 7. I even wondered if I put the right address on my SASE because I sent the submission right in the middle of our last move. Nope. Based on the nice note hand-written at the end of the letter, I'm guessing the delay was because they were arguing over whether to accept Caldera or not. I guess the No votes won. The note did not say anything of the sort, but it conveyed a sincere regret that they couldn't accept the book. *sigh* I'm taking the positives where I can find them (even if it's entirely possible I'm only fooling myself).

BTW, Caldera is on hold until further notice. As are every other book until I can get RTL ready to go. Like I've said before, I really have a feeling about RTL, and I think it could really launch my career. Once that's done, I fully expect my other books will be pulled into the jet stream along with it. (And if they aren't, well, that's okay, too. I still love them all.)

Now, to get started on my day. Have a great one, everybody!


Wendy Roberts said...

Hugs on the R but it sounds like you're definitely on the right track here!

I do print off the ms to do final draft edits. I do feel bad about all that paper & ink so I print on both sides of the paper. It seems to require a different part of the brain to do a hard edit and I always catch more stuff this way.

Sean Ashby said...

I hate to waste paper, too, but I print each chapter out after each draft as a matter of back-up (I've lost enough digital files to know how easy it is for a lot of hard work to just vanish). I also print both sides, and then toss the old drafts in the recycle bin.

For some reason it is easier to see certain things in print. I usually don't read the printed version, though, until a long time has passed since I wrote that part or edited it last. I also give the printed version to my wife or anyone else who may be critiquing it so they can write their comments on it.

Plus, it is a nice feeling to physically hold all your hard work in your hands!

Zinnia Cyclamen said...

Commiserations on the rejection. I print out about once per draft, towards the end of the revisions, because I too catch more typos and find more things that need tweaking when I read from the page. I also read the whole thing out loud when I think it's nearly finished, which helps me to see mistakes I would otherwise miss because I know what they're supposed to say!

liz fenwick said...

((()))s on the R.

I print out after the first draft because I see more mistakes on paper!