Monday, October 29, 2012

My Journey


So I left off with me wondering what the heck dialogue tags were.
After searching the internet I found a whole slew of information about dialgue tags. Problem was that it still confused the hell out me. I did the only thing that made sense at the time. I went through my entire WIP and added a dialogue tag after every dialogue.

I know that sounds right crazy, but hey, I thought that’s what my editor was asking me to do.
Then I tackled the next thing she wanted me to work on, fixing all the grammar mistakes in the document. That was easy enough – I paid someone else to do it. Grammar has never been my strong point. I blame the public school system in my home town for this. I honestly do. So much so, that a couple of years ago I asked my sister if she wanted to join me in a class action lawsuit against them. She declined. I also blamed that on them as well. Somehow along with failing to teach us grammar they also made her compliant.

Anyway, on with my story.

I sent off my edits and patiently waited for her to send me an email with my release date.

Fast forward a month later. I finally received my email. But it wasn’t what I was expecting. My dialogue tags were still all wrong, but now I had much more to fix because every friggin’ dialogue had a crazy tag. I think I should also mention that if I didn’t know what to add at the end of the dialogue I put things like, ‘she tilted her head’, ‘she sighed’, she peered’, ‘she walked away’ and ‘she cried’ and so on and so forth.

So my tags were still all wrong and my grammar was apparently still a mess. My editor told me to find a critique partner to help with getting my WIP together. So I did what any newbie author would do faced with a situation like mine. I stayed in bed and cried. I was a horrible writer who didn’t know diddly about writing.
After a lot of coaxing from my husband, a few days later I got up and tackled my edits. The first thing I did was search for critique partners. I had no idea that such a concept existed. But did I truly need a critique partner? I could do this myself, I thought. I did more research on dialogue tags and queried a couple of authors on the authors loop. I had my answer. Not right now.

I went through my WIP again and fixed all my dialogue tags. Next thing I had to do was fix my grammar. I went through the document again and added all my missing commas, because honestly, when someone talks about grammar, comma’s are the only thing that comes to mind.
Even though I was able to complete my edits without the help of a critique partner, I did send out a query for one. After a couple of days of waiting, I still didn’t have any takers (go figure?). But I couldn’t wait on that, I had a deadline to meet and wanting to show my editor that I could get things done early, I sent my WIP back off  and waited patiently for my release date.

To be continued.

Monday, October 22, 2012

My Journey

My Journey

In the spring of 2011, I decided to write a book. I had this idea kicking around in my head for quite some time.

Aliens invading Earth and the madness that would ensue afterward (bwahaha).

I had this girl popping in my head as my heroin. She was pretty, petite, strong willed and bad-ass. Just the type of girl I needed, she wouldn’t take an alien invasion sitting down or sniveling.

She wouldn’t leave me alone. Everywhere I went I could picture her in different scenarios, how she would react and even what she would say. So much so that while sitting in grad class I began to jot down her journey in my school notebook. In that single night I had filled roughly ten handwritten pages with notes about Eva and her backstory.

After starting, I found that I couldn’t stop. I worked on her story at work and at home until the wee hours of the night. I even began taking my laptop to class and sat in the back corner to write her story. After a month and a half I had her plotted. After re-reading it I realized that her hero was only mentioned in passing, as if he were an afterthought.

Back to the drawing board.

I added Taio into the story and with that; his personality came out more. Which meant I had to revise Eva and her reactions to his domineering personality.

Done right?

Not exactly.

I re-read it again. It was a story focused on the hero and heroine. Did anyone else live in this fictional planet? Uh, yes. So back to the drawing board, again. I had to add more people into the mix.

Okay finally it was done. I read and re-read it a million times. I was ready for it to be done. I sent it off to my mother to read (I had no idea there were crit groups, in fact I didn’t know what crit meant). And guess what? She loved it! It was perfect just the way it was (yes, my mommy loves me).

So instead of sending it off to a publisher, I decided to self-publish it. I used Create Space and uploaded my book onto Amazon. It was really easy to do, I was also able to log onto Amazon and upload a digital version for Kindle. How exciting was that? Very.

By October 2011, I had 40 people buy my book. WONDERFUL! People liked my book. How awesome was that? No one knew me or what I was about and they bought my book. I was doing mental cart wheels, because face it, I have a fear of breaking my wrists if I’d try a real one.

So with my confidence boost I pulled it from the web and sent a synopsis to Ellora’s Cave. Now mind you, since it was an erotica, EC was the only publisher that came to mind. Anyway, a couple of weeks later, I received an email asking for my first couple of chapters and my last chapter. Mental cart wheels were rampant in my head.

Then two weeks later I received the best email that I've ever received. My book was being picked up by EC and they were going to forward me a contract. I celebrated and man did I celebrate!

I’m going to be a famous writer! I told everyone around me.

Then, my editor sent me the pre-edits that she wanted me to take care of.

Great! I had my first edits and my first deadline. I opened up the email and read, and read again. So much stuff…so many different words being said…they jumbled together…a different language was being spoken.

I took a deep breath. First things first, I needed to go through the entire document and fix my dialogue tags.

Wait…what the heck are dialogue tags?
To be continued...

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Getting my cherry popped (in more ways than one)

First let me start by saying to all my friends who read and write erotica - get your mind out the gutter- sheesh.

I just came back from Ellora's Cave Romanticon 2012 and have come to the realization that I need to step into the social media world. While everyone around me was tweeting and blogging, I was texting my husband and sister (love you both). Sad, I know. But still, I realized (um hm, it may have been my roomie Lea Barrymire) that in order to get my name out into the galaxy (I know I'm going big, but why not?) that this is the next step in my growth.

So with hands shielding my eyes (but peeking still) I have arrived!

Twitter: @AMGriffinbooks