Thursday, January 16, 2014

Tearing it apart

I thought that now An Unstill Life is out, and I can focus on writing something new again, I'd be returning to my #juvvelesbian novel and writing the climax.  When I dropped the story to dive into edits on An Unstill Life, that's where I left it.

Instead, I find myself tearing a book I wrote 3 years ago to pieces, and putting it back together in a whole new way.

I submitted the older book to my editor, thinking it would fit in the same niche as An Unstill Life.  She came back with a bunch of ideas about what she thought needed to happen to make it work, and that included taking out the whole second POV character.

So now it seems I'm working on my first NA title.  And it's weird to be trying to put this story together through only the one character's eyes.  It's a story about a brother and sister who have never been close and the way their relationship changes and develops after their parents die. Both have secrets they don't want the other to know, and by writing the book in a dual POV, I thought I was highlighting the mistaken way each character views the other.

In making this a single POV, I need to keep that, but show it through only one character's eyes.  And it's not going to be easy.

At this stage I'm just working out which pieces of the story I need to keep and which can go (and a lot is being tossed).  Once I've done that, I'll need to go back and bulk up some scenes, and probably write in some more.  I'm not sure that what I wind up with will be any good, but it's not like I don't still have copies of the original book if I think I like that better and want to go back to that version.

Have you ever done radical surgery on one of your stories?


  1. The most I ever did was taking an MG from 80k to 60k. I felt like I was tearing out the guts of the book, was very unhappy with the result, and no agent wanted to look at it anyway. :P

    Good luck with your ripping-fest! :)

  2. I moved a scene in Fools Gold and was impressed with how many other things I needed to change to make that work. But it's a better book now.
    Sounds like you have a great writing challenge, have fun with it!

  3. That will be a huge change. You'll have to think in terms of what the one character thinks of the other one rather than what that character thinks of himself. (That made more sense in my head BTW.) It can be done though!

  4. I'm working on something similar to one of my books. The root of the idea wasn't bad, but I didn't have enough experience to do it properly. It's an exhausting task. You basically have to rewrite everything, even when you use old material. Good luck with it :)

  5. I've had to do this also. I had to rewrite all the scenes with my antagonist to make him stronger. I also had to include more scenes with him. It felt daunting at first but I pulled it off... I hope. *sigh* Good luck with your revisions.

  6. I've done lots of changes on my wolf story, but not as much as removing a POV. But I know you can do it:) Best of luck.