Summer Doldrums

The heat has arrived in my corner of the mid-Atlantic, and the din of high-speed circulation fans adds to the whine of the A/C we have in one room.  That noise plus the still cloying heat when the outside cools below the inside as we sleep makes for a months of sleep deprivation.  I attempt every year to maintain my work levels, but my attention just dribbles down to the point where spider solitaire can occupy me for hours. (Damn you Win 8 for changing that game away from perfection!)  Some years I do better than others, but I usually take the opportunity revise my NaNo project. Do up a cover and format the layout.

This is relatively minor revisions. I have trouble with revisions, the major kind when you can almost see what the problems are, to make a more interesting conflict, a less cackling villain.  Major revisions are not enjoyable, no matter how much teachers tell me they should be. I cannot see why they would be. If I knew what was wrong I could fix it, but advice usually assumes you know already or their mindset fits you.

Maybe they are assuming that you already have an editor or canny beta readers. (those are worth their weight in chocolate, BTW, and it is very hard to find someone who can explain what doesn’t work and why) I can do a minor revision pass to clean up grammar and clarify my intentions, and my stories usually add about ten percent to their word count for this kind of revision. This is enough if you are writing fanfic, and many of those writers don’t even seem to use their spellcheckers or have passed their composition class.  But for original stories I want to do much better than that.

Look, a spider!

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