The Writer's Desk

Writing, publishing & marketing notes from Jamie DeBree & her alter egos

Sidetracks, Figures, & Alter-Egos

I got a bit sidetracked last week when I decided to go back through the draft of the first book in the young-adventurer series I’m writing. My intention was just to read through, reacquaint myself with the character and worlds, and then be able to start writing the next book (it’s been over a year since I wrote in that world). Problem is, when I started reading, I started editing, which takes a lot longer than just reading through. Before I knew it, the week was over, and I’d written nothing…and I still hadn’t finished reading through the draft (it’s only 26k – that’s inexcusable for someone who can read a romance novel in two hours, tops).

Needless to say, that was…well, not a waste of time, exactly, but less productive than I’d hoped. I finally just emailed the draft to my editor, asked her to go through it and decided to just read the last chapter and start writing from there. Since that first book isn’t published yet (and I plan to hold it until the second book is done, and maybe the third as well…publishing around Christmas, methinks), I can always go back and edit both drafts to “fit” once I’m done with the second. I’m probably going to add about 4k words to the first, and I’d like the second to grow a little (mirroring the age of both readers and my main character) to 40k words. We’ll see how it all ends up – I don’t need to pad the word count for a publisher, so it just depends on how the story goes.

So last night I re-read the final chapter, noted a few questions to look up later, and started off on the next book. Feels good to be starting a new draft again (excerpt below).

Sydney Pointer

Sydney Pointer

I even have a likeness of Sydney, my main character for the kid books keeping me company at my writing booth now. I found her this past weekend while perusing the local miniatures & dollhouse shop. I’d gone in for a small porcelain doll I’d seen the week before, who spurred another series idea for me, and just happened to find Sydney while I was at it. I do believe I might have to make a few miniature scenes from Sydney’s adventures to hang on my wall…I love miniatures, and just walking through that shop and looking at all the little vignettes is incredibly inspiring for me. I think I might ask the store owner if they make this particular figure in other poses…how fun would that be?!

I also registered a couple more domain names this past weekend…one for each new alter-ego that my current drafts will be published under. The kid’s books will be under Marie Yoch, and the speculative fiction under J.D. Corsair. Those websites won’t be set up for awhile yet, but I feel good having the domains purchased so no one else can grab ’em. They won’t be terribly dynamic sites, just placeholders for book info from each name, unless one name happens to take off at some point. Guess we’ll see how these books turn out, eh?

If I get my writing butt in gear, I can finish the second book in eighty days (or roughly two and a half months). That’s only 500 words per day. Five hundred words is totally doable, so there’s no reason not to just get over my bad-habit-ridden self and just *do it*…

This week’s excerpt is from yesterday’s 500 word sprint. Onward!

Longest. Ten. Minutes. Ever.

The clock on the wall ticked in perfect time to the drone of Ms. Ellison’s voice. Even with the windows open the classroom was warm and muggy, and Sydney could swear the minute hand was moving backward, not forward. Ten more minutes and she’d be free for the summer, and more importantly, free to look for the second stone on the list her grandfather had given her the year before.

Or at least figure out how to get to Hawaii, which is where she thought the stone might be.

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Publisher Site: Brazen Snake Books

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