Thursday, April 12, 2012

My Novel's Journey: Editing Neeta 2

Yes!  Finally!  I have recovered from the conference, finished my workshops, sent the Catholic school calendar manuscripts (my annual assignment) and cut my to-do list to 77!  That means I could edit Neeta Lyffe 2: I Left My Brains in San Francisco!

I had a very interesting reaction from my critiquers concerning Neeta 2.  The ladies loved it, and the guys didn't, even after I fixed the romance.  Obviously, I didn't do enough; the guys still thought Neeta came off as weak and not just troubled.  The ladies who critiqued, however, seemed to get that.  It was a very interesting to see the dichotomy there.

However, I don't want this to be a chick book, so I've spent the past few days "buffing" Neeta up.  There's a new opening chapter where she shows her stuff against a zombie (and where we see a little about why she and Ted are good together.)  However, for the rest, I was able to change a few reactions, add a little thought process, and show a little more of Ted's good qualities. (Aside from being laid back and funny.)

Next, I mapped out all the scenes in order to make sure my pacing was good and that I had enough clues woven in ahead of time.  I may do this again in more detail, but for this time, I just concentrated on zombie appearances, documentary and clues to the climactic invasion.  As a result, I am moving a couple of scenes around and am adding another documentary entry by Gary Opkast. I tried to keep the clues subtle enough to keep folks wondering while clear enough that people would get it when the characters do.  I think I'll have to go back and add a couple of other clues, though I might drop them into conversation instead of another documentary.

Overall, though, I'm surprised at how much I enjoyed re-reading it, even after letting it sit a month and mulling over the manuscripts many problems.  I feel pretty confident that with some concentrated effort, I can have this polished in a week or two, maybe while starting on Gapman as well.  I'm not sure the multitasking will hold up, but I do know I need to get back on a schedule after a long break of obsessive project work.

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