Sunday, 15 September 2013

Right Before the Big Reveal I'd like to Give a Secret Away...

I'm finished with the first draft of Back Home and have put it aside to ponder another day. Right now I'm working on Going Home and have prepared 4 new chapters, which I think will help to take the story in an exciting new direction and tighten the existing story even more. This is one stage I feel that's crucial in the editing process before I send it out to my editor to get the most benefit from my experience with her. What I like to do is put my chapters through the edit minion grinder—it's one of my editing secrets. You can find edit minion at http://www.editminion.com. This is a great little program and powerful too. I once tried it on a 96,000 word manuscript I had and it still did the job for me, although I had to lessen the work load on the poor little creature.

It's a pretty self explanatory device. You select which of the functions you want it to perform by checking boxes for any adverbs using the adverbinator, weak words, said replacements, passive voice (which I find so useful), ending with preposition, tricky homonyms, click├ęs (also very useful), common misspellings (which are in US English and not Canadian, something for Canadians to watch out for, but you probably already knew that ;) ), and frequently used words. Once you've checked off the appropriate boxes and press the edit button on the bottom you'll generate a "report card" which will use colour coded highlighting to indicate which words are suspect for those categories you previously checked off.

I've used this on more than one occasion and it's a huge time saver. I've never found it a replacement for a good editor.

A poor editor can be your worst nightmare, and believe me I've run into my share of those, but a good editor can be your best friend, and if you're writing a novel, especially if you put your work out there for other's to buy on Kindle, Smashwords, etc, in my opinion it's where you should spend most of your time and money.

I'll give you some tips for finding a good editor in one of my upcoming posts. Oh, and don't forget to check out my most recently published work Going Back. It's only 99 cents on Kindle. To find it click on the image below.




You can find me through the week at www.Kimwelsman.ca or on twitter @kimwelsman.

Monday, 9 September 2013

Relax, Before You Race to the Finish Line

The first draft of Back Home is finally done! This is my fourth book in the series and I have to say that my little experiment of writing a serial has been a productive and interesting one. I've learned so much in the last seven months writing these four novella/novels and there's more to come yet.

If you're interested in my journey through this process or what I did before this, I invite you to have a look at my earlier blog posts.

In this and the next post I'd like to focus on the final stage of my novel. With the first draft completed and endnotes/thread notes tacked on the back of my book, I now have an intact story and plot line, which helps with flow and to me on with subsequent edits. At this stage I like to take a bit of time away from the project. So I'm going to give myself about a week. I have plenty of other projects to work on and I'm also gearing up for the last course in my master's program at the Mount. This down time gives me an opportunity to take my mind out of the work, long enough to come back at it at a later date, so I can look at it with fresh eyes. This process tends to be of tremendous benefit. And I know you may be saying to yourself: Well your so close, why not just finish, get the work out there? To me, this last step is crucial. It's difficult, but necessary to gain a fresh perspective on my novel so that I can make the most of my experience and provide a polished product that readers will enjoy, along with the help of my invaluable editor, Keiti, of course.

Next week, I'm going to reveal one of my little gems that I use to help me in the final editing process, before I send my baby out to an editor.

You can find me through the week at kimwelsman.ca or on twitter @kimwelsman. I have a cool new trailer on my website and hope you have time to check it out.

Sunday, 1 September 2013

The Giveaway Experiment

A few weeks ago I had a giveaway running. I used rafflecopter to try and promote my newest ebook "Going Back" and my blog's second anniversary.



I thought this might generate some interest in my book, while celebrating a milestone. I did almost all of the prescribed things you should do for a giveaway. I tweeted when I started the giveaway, didn't hard sell the giveaway by constantly providing tweets, and was clear on what constituted an entry. However, I didn't provide pictures of the items to be won, and didn't provide repeat entries for each day. Failing to do this may have been my undoing. I'd like to try another giveaway, but milestones don't come around too often and perhaps my blog is not the best forum to try such an experiment again.

Unfortunately Goodreads doesn't provide giveaways for ebooks, which could be a great way to connect with science fiction and fantasy readers.

I did get some amazing traffic to my website and gained twitter followers, which I think meant more eyes on my presence, and more people possibly willing to check out my book.

You can find me through the week at kimwelsman.ca or on twitter @kimwelsman. I have a cool new trailer on my website and hope you have time to check it out.