About Me

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I received teaching and engineering degrees and have traveled extensively, living ten years outside the US. I moved from the big city of Houston to a small sleepy community in North Carolina, which has been a tremendous change and a great inspiration for my novels, full of the local color. My time has been filled with writing and helping to physically construct three additions to our former farmhouse. I have a great view of the mountains ten miles away across the broad valley and the sunsets are breathtaking. I am an avid reader of all kinds of mystery and contemporary fiction.

Friday, April 12, 2013

First Editorial Review of New Book

First Editorial Review of New Book

Today, I received the first editorial comments for the seventh book in the Rachel Christie Murder Mystery series. Now comes the hard part of re-writing to give the work a more polished presentation. However, this is only the initial phase and it will be the first re-write. I will have more editorial comments and re-writes after this, I'm sure. Writing the book is a hard feat in itself, with the days and nights (yes, sleepless nights) thinking about the plot and letting all the nuances solidify into a believable story with several subplots that work well together. However, I feel that having to do the re-writes is even more difficult.

In writing the book, I only had to worry about getting the ideas on the page. With re-writing, I have to make sure each sentence has all the words it needs and only the words it needs. Each paragraph has to have all the sentences it needs and only the sentences it needs. Pages and chapters are the same. Anything not necessary to the plot or description is weeded out. Descriptions are difficult for me because I want to include enough to give the reader the feeling of being there, but not enough to get boring. Too many books spend too much time describing what we already know. As they say, ''A rose is a rose is a rose." No need to go into great detail or describe the scent. Everyone knows those things.

I have always hated re-work, even as a project engineer. To do the job first, with no revisions, is only a dream I can wish. With writing, I want my characters to be distinct and to be worth reading about. Above all, they have to say and do things that are consistent with the personna that has been created for them. Having a series with the same characters means going back and re-reading the previous novels to be sure that the present novel and characters follow along the lines that the readers expect. It is also important to  give the characters growth. They should all change because of their experiences. My characters see a lot of action and they should change accordingly.

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