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Posts Tagged ‘writing process’

#%&*@ Typos! #MFRWAuthor

Welcome to the MFRW Weekly Blog Challenge! This week’s topic is “Sorry, Editor: My Common Writing Mistakes.”

I like to think hubs and I are pretty good at submitting clean manuscripts, so this is a hard one to fess up to, but here goes!

When we first decided to try our hand at fiction after having done some academic writing together, we were fortunate to find the Romance Writers of America and join our local chapter. It wasn’t long before the chapter offered a day-long romance writing workshop facilitated by Jennifer Crusie, which was an eye opener for us. We had a steep learning curve ahead!

One of the invaluable things she spoke about, however, was what she called the “Don’t Look Down” draft. You know the moment – when Wile E. Coyote runs off the cliff, he doesn’t start to fall until he looks down and realizes the earth is no longer under his ninety-mile-an-hour feet.

The point is that when the muse is flowing and the characters are talking is NOT the moment to get all bungled up in grammar, spelling, commas, and proper English. Get the ideas down, however rough. Go with the flow. Don’t look down. Go until it stops…

And Then: Take a deep breath, face what’s on the page, and edit it mercilessly.

Which we do. But I’m here to tell you that even with two of us (plus a couple beta readers) passing a manuscript back and forth what seems like countless times, there are typos that still pop up when it gets to our editor.

That’s because our brains are a marvelous invention – in their mad dash to bring us meaning out of what we read, our brains readily supply what ought to be there, instead of what’s actually on the page.

So our apologies to our editors, who have to weed the typos out and fix them. Sadly, it’s not even a learning experience. If I make a grammar mistake and someone teaches me the correct solution, I can learn that and apply it in the future. But typos? #%&*@ Typos? Random events, it feels like, twice over: randomly hitting the page, and randomly being missed by several pairs of eyes.

Tedious work, but worth it in the end. Thank you, editors!

Be sure to click to travel for more confessions…

 

The family said WHAT? #MFRWAuthor

Week 2 of the MFRW year-long blog challenge! Click on the list at the bottom to travel to all participants. This week’s theme? How my family supports my writing.

 

None of us could do what we do without support, and when family is on our side, we thrive – we can take on the world. For starters, the most important family member in my life – my husband – is my co-author, so we face the world with a solid foundation.

We got a good head start in the families we grew up in. Our parents are gone, but all four of them encouraged creativity and supported unconventional choices, however ill-advised some of those choices might have seemed at the time.

Hubs’ mother was an avid romance reader, especially during the nine years she was a widow after his dad died. As her eyesight worsened, we’d hit our local used book store for a half-dozen large-print romance books every three weeks before making the five hour drive to check in on her for the weekend. She did read (and liked) a couple of our early romantic suspense stories, although she confessed she “skipped over” the sex parts. She would probably not have approved of the erotic direction our writing later took.

Both my parents, on the other hand, probably would have, and I think my dad would even admit to some envy, were he still here. His older sister – my aunt – worked for the Kinsey Institute, so no topic was off limits when she was around. She and he are probably doing fist pumps as they watch us navigate the publishing world with our sexy stories. My mother would probably have kept her approval more hidden (she disapproved of my aunt). But when it came time for me to clean out their last apartment, on the bookshelf hidden behind the clothes in her closet I found a well-read copy of the Kama Sutra, so I know her heart would have been on our side.

We carry their support with us, always.

 
© 2018 Adriana Kraft. All Rights Reserved.
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