Jenna Black's Blog Experiment

Wherein romance author Jenna Black plunges into the terrifying new territory of blogging . . .


Sunday, May 21, 2006

Gotta Love Those Revisions

With Watchers in the Night, I got off easy. As I nervously awaited that revision letter, I conjured all kinds of images of huge changes, disagreements, etc. When I got the letter and read through it, I realized with each point my editor made, "Hey, I can do that. That's easy." And it was.

Not surprisingly, the same cannot be said for the revisions I have to make for Secrets in the Shadows, the sequel. As I read through that letter, I became more and more worried. My editor made some requests I didn't understand, and commented on things I didn't know how to fix. Naturally, my first instinct was to go into a panic. I nipped that one in the bud, and set about doing the easy revisions first. Then, I tackled the ones that I thought were kind of hard but that I understood.

After that, it was time to tackle the ones I just didn't get. I called my editor and had a nice long conversation with her, trying to understand where she was coming from. It was a productive conversation, and after I got off the phone, I felt much more confident that I could give her what she wanted.

What I hadn't counted on was a phenomenon I've heard of frequently from other writers, but that I've never experienced myself. I am now sick of reading my own book! I've never had this problem before, because whenever I was reading my own book, it was because I wanted to make changes, or because I hadn't read it in a long time and was curious if I'd still like it.

This time, I have to make changes at someone else's request, and I'm reading through the whole dang thing twice in the same week. (Three times, if you count the minor amount of reading I had to do when I was fixing the "easy stuff.")

In short, these revisions are kicking my ass! But I've at least gotten them done on paper. Now, all I have to do is type them all into the computer. I can't wait to get through it all. And not just 'cause I'm sick of reading the book--I've got to have the third book of the Guardians of the Night series done by August. And I don't even know what the plot's going to be yet! I have to get started, but I also have to force myself to keep my concentration on the revisions first.

Lest you think I'm complaining, I'm actually having a grand time of it. These are all great problems to have, and I'm thrilled that Tor has enough confidence in me to expect me to be able to deliver a full novel in three months. Good thing I write fast, no?

So far, it's looking like my publishing schedule will be:
Watchers in the Night, November 2006.
Secrets in the Shadows, May 2007.
Guardians book 3 (may be titled Shadows on the Soul, but not sure yet), September 2007.
Guardians book 4, May 2008.

It's going to be a challenge, but a great one, one I've dreamed of all my life. Now, it's time for me to stop procrastinating and get back to those revisions.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Postpartum Blues

I hate the time between when I finish my last polishing run for a book and when I start the next book. I always go into something of a slump immediately afterward--hence, the reason I haven't posted to this blog in so long.

I doubt I'm going to have the luxury of indulging in this slump for long, though. I recently got my revision letter for Secrets in the Shadows, my sequel to Watchers in the Night. I haven't actually received the contract yet, so I'm not sure exactly when the revisions are due, but I know the schedule is going to be aggressive. I think starting on those revisions is what's given me the energy to actually write a blog entry today--though I doubt this wil be my most brilliant, witty entry. I'm still not back to full creative mental capacity. I resolve to get my butt back in gear by next week at the latest.

I don't know how long it will be before I get my page proofs for Watchers, but I have a feeling they'll come relatively soon. Won't it be fun to be revising one book while going over the proofs of another? And then there's book three of the series, which I believe will be due in August and which I haven't even plotted yet. Yikes! No time for the postpartum blues. I actually have real deadlines I have to meet. How cool is that???



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