Oregon writer, Rain Trueax, and Oregon painter, Diane Widler Wenzel co-author Rainy Day Thought. Diane generally posts on Wednesdays and Rain on Saturdays. There may be extra days or changes as situations warrant. Comments are always welcome and appreciated as it turns an article into a discussion.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

when it goes well

It might seem after the misery of June in editing the paranormals with the mistakes that were so upsetting that I'd let editing go for awhile and concentrate instead on having a good time in July-- or even begin writing Book 4 of the Hemstreet Witches. 

What was on my mind instead were the contemporary romances that I'd first brought out in December 2011 and into 2012, books I had written when I was writing for myself and not trying to get my books published. I didn't try to get them out there until Amazon made being an indie writerpossible

My debate today regards these contemporaries, which have fallen into Amazon's black hole thanks to not many sales and Amazon's algorithms. I believe in those stories. Should I should pull them (there are ten) from wider distribution and get them into Kindle Unlimited, where they can be borrowed, not necessarily just bought? Some say Amazon's algorithms are kinder to books in KU. I have no idea as this will be m first time there with the paranormal contemporary romances. 

My goal is to have the books, which sometimes share characters (although each stands alone), seen as a set-- of sorts-- where if the reader likes one, they'll try the others. KU might accomplish that or maybe not. Promoting anything for sales always has such questions. First though, I wanted to edit them all to be sure they stood up to the writing I am doing today.

Because of my frustration on the first of the Hemstreet Witches, I wasn't sure how editing would go with books that were written twenty plus years earlier. They have, of course, had multiple edits but also times change for rules in writing. Some of that is small stuff-- such as do not use semi-colons in romances. Other issues are bigger-- like point of view shifts.

I began with one of my favorites, Second Chance, with a word for word edit. Besides maybe finding errors, my goal was to change points of view to more like I write today. In the '90s, head hopping was popular in romances. This is where two people are talking and the reader gets to know what is each person's head (hence the term head hopping). 

Head hopping still is found in books. I've even read them where the POV can go to a mailman. Apparently, readers don't mind that-- at least, if sales indicate anything.

But for me, today, when I write, I prefer to have no more than two or three heads the reader gets into. That can mean a villain (always fun to get into their heads) or in the case of the paranormals a spirit guide and/or demon. Points of view only change with a scene shift. I like writing that way and feel it improves the action with one character used to reveal the other's thinking through observations or guesses.

Sometimes fixing that, on an older book, requires giving up too much and I've mostly left it as it was. I was not sure how it'd go with Second Chance, but for the most part, it improved the dynamics. For a few scenes, I did switch between them but not head hopping. 

There was one particular sequence where I went to bed feeling I needed head hopping-- a very active scene where life was on the line. I woke up sure it'd be stronger if all from the heroine's point of view. Since I wasn't sure about that, I saved it with a new date. When I'd finished, I knew the action was much better without switching POVs.

Exactly, how I will get these contemporaries seen, I am still not sure. Some claim it takes relaunching the books. I bought a book that suggests ways to do that. Before I worry about that, I want them edited to be the best I can do for today. I felt happy that Second Chance did not have the nots that I'd found in Enchantress. Editing, when it's going well, is still a lot of work but not nearly as depressing.  

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