Friday, November 04, 2005

Follow-up Questions and Stuff

Happy Friday, BGs. And it is happy. Today I’ll be e-mailing off my rewrite of Violet Dawn. Yippee-yay! By this time I am thoroughly sick of the book. This is normal. Also by this time I no longer think it’s any good. Also normal. I’ve been over the thing so many times now that the chapter hooks fail to move me and the story’s lost all its punch.

I shall now need the editors’ wows to start building me back up and tell me I’ve done a good job. Let’s hope that happens. So far it ain’t failed to yet. Then give me a few more months beyond that, and I’ll actually feel good about the book again.

Last book I finished was, of course, Web of Lies (releases January). By the time I was done with that book—same thing. I e-mailed it off, thinking, “Well, that’s one boring read.” Then my husband read it and went absolutely nutso over it. Like he hasn’t done with any of my other books. And the editor really thought it rocked. So now, a few months before it’s ready to come out, I like the thing again. In fact, I think the plot downright zings, and it’s gonna give Dead of Night a run for its money.

Same book, completely different outlooks on it. Only difference is the passage of time. See why we authors can’t listen to those fickle voices in our heads while we're writing? They just aren’t reliable.

Speaking of Web of Lies, today is the drawing for the winners of those 25 ARCs (advanced reading copies). I’ll post the winners’ names on Monday. Those ARCS will be going in the mail soon. Only two things the winners will have to pledge. (1) No giving away the story twists. (2) No giving away the book dedication. Which is going to come as a complete surprise to some folks.

Some questions from yesterday. Bonnie wanted to know what “red herrings” mean. Bonnie, they’re false clues. Woven into the story to fool the reader into thinking X is guilty when he’s not, or Y happened, when it didn’t, etc. We suspense and mystery writers are basically a deceitful, conniving lot.

Regarding my tendency to misuse transitive and intransitive verbs ,and turn nouns into verbs, Becky asked, “Do you think that ever becomes a distraction to the story? Or does it seem like the only 'right' way of saying what you're thinking?” Yes, I think anything like this can be overused. That’s why my good ol’ eds will let me get away with some of it—enough not to quash my voice—but not all of it. But bottom line, I always strive for the tightest, punchiest sentence. Whatever I have to do to get that—I’m there.

Before I sign off for the week, it’s my turn to pose a marketing question. What would y’all like to see happen for you as the months approach toward a new book release of mine? What would you like to receive as a BG, and what would you do in response to receiving it? Be as creative as you like. (Except for you, Stuart. Your creativity is downright scary. Just regular ol’ thinking from you is about all I can handle.) Whether your ideas are affordable is another issue, but money aside for the moment, I’d like to see what you come up with.

Signing off for the weekend. When we gather again on Monday, I doggone better have a good idea about the next book I’m writing.


Cara Putman said...

Brandilyn, I've introduced several friends to your books who love them, so it would be fun to be able to forward an email postcard or something to them about Web of Lies. Especially since most of them have read Eyes of Elisha and the Hidden Faces series.


Bonnie S. Calhoun said...

That's kinda' hard to give an answer to. I like recieving your knowledge and insight on being a great and effective writer. I'm learning so much. I would like to receive enough learnin' from you to be able to write as exciting as you do!

Unknown said...

I know what I wanna see--the ROUGH DRAFT! Bwah-haha.

Jackie Layton said...

This may be too expensive, but what if you mailed us real bookmarks advertising your book? We could pass them out to our friends or place some in our church libraries.

Camy Tang said...

My comment is similar to Jackie's. I like getting author bookmarks to scatter in the Inspy fiction section at B&N.

Anonymous said...

Okay, I'm more of the selfish kind and am thinking this in a "winning a prize" type way. We (the comments show I don't have to just speak for myself) have learned a great deal from you and appreciate your generosity. So, Brandilyn, I'd be willing to bet a full ms crit for one of our unpubbed authors might be a great prize. I know you have deadlines but thought maybe (this is a creative longshot) you might offer 1 free crit from a drawing. And in return, the person will review and promote the book of your choice (Web of Lies or Violet Dawn or maybe something else--DK--whatever you choose) Anyway, of course I'm hoping to win in this but whoever does, it would be a great one-on-one help. However, I do realize this is a long shot. Your time is more than accounted for. But, shoot, if I didn't throw this one out, it might never even be considered. It's worth the try.

Lynette Eason said...

Hmmmmmmmm........How about I get you an interview on a nationally syndicated radio show? The show is done live in South Carolina, but the Satellite is in California so we're talking literally coast to coast including Hawaii and Puerto Rico, and Alaska! Would that win me a prize? Aw shucks BC, I'm just kidding. I'd do it for free for certainly deserve it after all the help you've given us struggling author wannabes...

Anyhoo (as you like to say),

I have a question about agents...would that be a topic we could discuss at some point?

And since I'm a couple of posts behind, I'll go ahead and address ideas for next book:

Hmmmm (again)...plot line...thinking, know, it's really hard to come up with ideas for the second book in a series when you haven't even read the first.

However, remember the dead body Paige finds in the tub, but can't tell anyone about? What if you had a relative of said dead body pop up in book two? Then oops, maybe book one wasn't finished after all cuz, body number two has died in exactly the same way in the same tub? And of course Paige gets pulled back into her nightmare? Or not. Boring? Sigh...sorry.

It's late and I'm kinda loopy at this point in time (although not as much as Stuart is during normal waking hours...hehehehe. Stuart, I must say, I look forward to your posts on a daily basis!)

Okay, nite all and I'm so looking forward to Monday's post!


C.J. Darlington said...

Maybe you could let us know what would benefit you? I try to recommend your books whenever I can (and give them as gifts), but I'd love to know how I could help more.

Val said...

Holly Lisle's gotten permission from her publishers to post the first couple of chapters from her books in a sort of countdown to the release date (First chapter, two months out; Second chapter, one month out). That was cool to see because it was easy to point people to her website to give them a taste of her writing to see if this was something they wanted to read and it kept them re-visiting until the book came out.

I second the bookmarks idea and the e-mail postcard idea. Autographed bookplates would be fun as I give books a lot as presents and would love to be able to give autographed books.

Trailers to your upcoming books would be cool. Or a podcast of you reading the prologue or whatever from your book. I have a lot of friends who enjoy viewing trailers and cool stuff like that.

*shrug* I also don't really know what's effective from a marketing standpoint, so I'm just kind of shooting stuff out there. And I'll probably be back with some more random ideas. Hopefully, something will work for you.