I got back the edits for my next short erotica this week, and was happy to see mainly nit-picky things (that I was equally as happy to fix). My editor even added a couple commas – crazy! The one thing that most interested me though is a by-product of working on several stories at one time.
If you have a print copy of Tempest (it’s fixed in the digital files), you probably know that towards the end, there’s a sentence where the hero (Jake) is mistakenly referred to as “Jeff”. I know exactly why this happened – I was working on the serial at the same time I was drafting Her Private Chef, and the hero’s name in HPC is “Jeff”. When I write late at night, sometimes I’m so tired I probably shouldn’t be writing – and that’s generally when I make those types of mistakes.
I’ll admit, part of the reason I’ve left it in the print version is to annoy all the writerly perfectionists out there who feel the need to point it out as if it’s some sort of horrible wart on my novella. To them, it is. To me, it’s more like that one flaw that proves something is *real* rather than just a cookie cutter of everything else. But I freely admit to having an odd view of mistakes. I’m not a perfectionist like so many of my peers – while I do want things to be *as close* as I can get to perfect, a few small nits will not leave me tossing and turning at night.
In any case, the reason I bring this up is, my editor noticed that in my latest short story, I switched the female main character’s name (Kaylee) for Monica, my main female lead in The Biker’s Wench. The stories are completely different genres, and the characters are completely different as well – yet I was probably writing late at night, very tired, and somehow interchanged the name. I had to go back through that scene to make sure it didn’t affect the actual story because they are such different characters (luckily, it didn’t).
Needless to say, when you consider how many drafts I have going at any one time (normally at least four), there’s a pretty good chance that some night as I’m typing away, a character will sneak into the wrong story. With any luck, he or she won’t leave too much of a mess to clean up later.
The obvious solution for me is not to write when I’m dead tired. Sometimes that can’t be helped though. Yet another reason I need an editor (you know, along with lecturing me when I spell “breathe” as “breath” twice in one manuscript). Don’t know what I’d do without her.
If you work on several WIPs at once, do your characters sneak out and play in the others? Or is it just me they do this to?
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