Welcome back to another Open Book Blog Hop!
Today’s question is: Which part of your book do you spend the most time on? Beginning, middle or end? Something else?
And remember to pay a visit to my fellow writers to see what they have come up with. You can find their works here!
It would be pretty much impossible for me to categorically say which part of my writing I spend the most time on – the beginning, middle or the end. This is because I’m not a planner when it comes to my writing. Ideas come to me out of left field. And crucially, they don’t come to me in any kind of order. I knew elements of the ending for Chasing Shadows before much of the book had been written. The opening chapter for it actually came to me really quite late into the process.
I know for many authors, this approach would cause them a serious case of unease – not having any idea where the next part would be coming from. Me, I love this process. The initial read-through of the first draft is a wild experience. It’s the first time I actually see my entire narrative in order, not too different from reading a book for the first time. But there is also something oddly satisfying seeing a story in its most raw, primal form. It’s rough and ropey and in dire need of work. But there is something there, a seed to work from. After all, any gemstone just looks like a chunk of rock and dirt before it’s worked on meticulously after it comes out of the ground.
The part I spent the most time on was the editing. I read through the draft first, looking for errors and tidying things up. Then I uploaded it as a document to the Kindle app and used text to voice to listen to it from start to finish. It gave me a feel for sentence length, how the story flowed and also allowed me to listen out for further errors. It then went out to test readers who gave me feedback on what worked and what didn’t. I then sent it off to be professionally edited, proofread and typeset. The time spent in these late stages matched, if not exceeded, the time writing it. And I suspect the second book won’t be much different either.