The first flush of excitement of uploading the anthology (Stories of the Dark and Light – just in case you missed it) is over, and marketing is fully underway.
The first lot of reviews are in, and we are thinking about printing on demand.
The anthology, while it showcases our writing styles and (hopefully) puts our names out there, is also a forerunner for when we eventually upload our own individual novels. Naturally, we are experiencing a huge learning curve.
One of these curves has been editing.
We have had a few of our reviewers’ point out our editing needs to be more polished. To those reviewers – thank you. It is only through information from our readers, can we hope to correct problems in our writing.
Which brings me to a recent blog by Jay Colby In his blog he discusses learning from failure. While I don’t consider we have failed our readers per say, if we can improve our editing then we should. How else can we better our craft?
Barb and I met at a wonderful coffee shop that allowed us to sit at a booth for most of the day, and we went over our short stories with a red pen in my case and a blue pen and highlighter for Barb. The aim was to smooth out the creases. Before I go any further, I would like to mention Kay, Barb, Khalen and myself poured over the manuscript many times. Other people outside our group read the stories as well. However, we could have done more and that was what the day was about.
We must have looked a sight Barb and I, sitting side my side, muttering in unison as we read one and half stories (we ran out of time – we were only there six hours). There was much discussion, sporadic moments of pen wielding, coffees and hot chocolate.
In that time, we learnt a lot. Where we thought we had it right before, suddenly wasn’t when we both read it. Where we thought we didn’t or did need a punctuation mark, it was discussed and analysed. Rough edges were smoothed, and the writing flowed easier. So how did we not pick up these, (I won’t call them errors or mistakes, as they weren’t really) – inconsistencies perhaps, before we uploaded?
Were we in too much of a hurry? No, I don’t think so. As I mentioned earlier, many upon many hours were spent pouring over the manuscript. I think it is simpler than that. Even though it has only been a month since uploading, in fact, it has probably been two months since we last edited and proof read. While the manuscript may be unchanged, we, as a group and individually have continued to change. By interacting with other groups, attending more workshops, and paying attention to reviews on other books we have read, we are growing.
By taking that leap into uploading, we forced ourselves into reality. Through this, we gained a clearer understanding of the intricacies writing involves. We have grown, and with our readers by our side, we will continue to grow.
Here’s to taking more leaps with our writing.