Although it is necessary, it’s almost as bad as marketing.
For instance, I have been toiling over one of my books for a few weeks after my editor sent in back with an overall complaint that continuity needed some work.
Continuity needs some work.
OK, I’ll admit that it was a story I wrote in the mid-1970s, and only just dragged it back out of mothballs. A quick read of the 200 odd pages, making corrections where needed, I thought it held together quite well.
So, I sat down and read it again, and by the end, was surprised I had the temerity to send it to my editor in such a state.
What sometimes happens when working on a book over a period of time, is that unless you read what you’ve amended from start to finish again, you’re going to be in trouble.
And, yes, I’m in trouble.
So, I’ve had to go back to square one and draw up a continuity plan and then start filling in the gaps, and sowing proper seeds that grow into plot lines later.
That was a few months ago, when I was two-thirds of the way through with a 64-page notebook full of notes to keep the story flowing correctly, and inevitably, the book had grown to 436 pages and was likely to be longer by the end of the process.
And I can see it now, before I send it back, with corrections. New editor terse note to me: the book is too long. Cut, cut, cut.
So, getting back to the drawing board, reading and re-reading, adding and subtracting, and putting in the effort it requires, there’s only one part left to write, one that I keep putting off for some obscure reason.
Pity this wasn’t a movie. Cutting is so much easier.
The new first draft, which should probably be called the second draft, is a few pages over 500, but each and everyone is necessary to relate the story properly. I’ve read it twice, and it all makes sense. Let the editor make suggestions, and like always I will take them under advisement.
Enough with the complaining. It’s time to get back to work and get that last part done.
Then I can move on to the next project.