Plush Carpets And Silk Stockings (Editing Diary Part 6)

(Just realized this post series has been getting a lot of eyes—if you’re one of the new subscribers, hiya! And, uh—I’ve no idea what we’re getting into, but we’ll eventually get there. Promise. Find the first post here.)

Day 35, June 15th, 2020

Dove straight into chapter twelve after being forced to admit (by myself—to you) that I did nothing for two whole days previously. Luckily—not only did I finally reach the second half of the novel—but chapter twelve is good.

Working mostly on better dialogue flow today and some logistics issues—as in, how public can secret discussions actually be, and how the hell did I not see the problematic spatial relations while writing said secret discussions?

Continuity is my friend today. It wasn’t my friend in November of 2019.

Day 36, June 16th, 2020

Can I get the necessary acceleration to finish this in the next few weeks, since, y’know—second half of the book? After all, I’m in the really fun parts now, slowly closing in on my favourite scene from the whole novel…

Working on my syntax today. The sentences in this section were not optimal. Oh, and then there’s the curious case of trying to transcribe Croatian surnames into English.

Since most of the characters in the novel are female, I’ve been having fun with a lot of shes and hers all over. Tried to put in names as often as possible without too much repetition, but… anyway, fun exercise.

Trying to decipher whether I’ll need to cut the first part of the novel a bit shorter, or if I can keep the long, low-action parts in and shelve it under ‘first novel of a new series’. (I’ve been having issues with slow starts ever since I migrated into novels from short stories, and I hate them.)

Finished chapter 12! Yes, I’ll admit—the next one is my favourite from this novel, so I’m not wasting my time. I think that’s it for today, though—it’s a crowded week.

Day 37, June 17th, 2020

Lucky chapter thirteen, here I come! Dammit, the first sentence already has me anxious. In a good way. I hope.

Whoa, this chapter is even stronger than I remember. Will have to take a harder look at one of the MC’s character development.

I’ve read a wonderful thing about translation the other day, here—which made me think even harder about telling the best story I can.

Today I’m still dwelling over ‘slivovitz’ instead of ‘plum brandy’, which I started on, because it has its own freaking Wikipedia page. It’s one of those things which are hard for me to assess, as a non-native speaker.

Sing with me, con-ti-nu-ee-ty! (Sources of light in a scene.)

Weird things still happening—nobody’s nodded for a while now, but I still can’t remember that quiet is low audio, and silent is no audio.

You know you’re a romance writer… when you look up synonyms for throaty (voice). It’s the first of many, many times I plan on doing so in my life.

Day 38, June 18th, 2020

Okay, Vesna. Concentrate. This is it. The moment you’ve been waiting for. Remember what Jennifer Crusie wrote. Stop thinking about it. Just write it. (And do try not to make it to cringy.)

Day 39, June 19th, 2020

Had to go back into the scene I edited halfway through yesterday, because I simply realized I can’t write what I wanted to write here without any source of light whatsoever. So. I’m retconning complete darkness into a solitary lamplight. It’s a WIP. I’m allowed. And I’ll need to revisit this scene once more, too, to keep up with everything going on. It’s worth it.

Yesterday I realized that I’ll have another go at the whole novel, anyway, after my beta’s done with it. Is it weird if I’m starting to look forward to it? Huh. I’m reaching yet another burst of this is shit, on the side. Luckily, I’m already used to it.

Oh, and I wrote the very first sentence of a brand new novel thing today. What does that song go like, dream… dream, dream, dream… does it not?

Yes, I quoted one of my favourite TV shows of all time in this scene, but since I managed to stop myself after only three words, I’ll let it slide.

A sentence in the middle of the scene had me laughing so hard it almost made me cry with how badly it was written. I’m not sure how much pulpy style this novel can endure, even though the scene is unmistakingly pulpy. I’m not used to playing in the style, so editing it makes it feel wrong to me.

Didn’t think I’ll finish chapter 13 today, but hey. Also, I had no idea it ended mid-scene, bwahahahaha. Unfortunately, the first few paragraphs of chapter 14—the exact continuation of the scene in question—will need to be rewritten. I guess I just wasn’t feeling like it in November, but now I would hate the scene to be so quickly wrapped as a reader. Thus—one expansion pack coming right up. But not right now. Possibly not even today. No concentration left.

Day 40, June 20th, 2020

Oops. Didn’t have a lot of free time today, and spent it all on a new novel triggered yesterday. Yes, I’m in that kind of mood again. Also, since I knew I needed to do the scene expansion, and for a scene I actually needed brainpower for, leaving it for tomorrow was no hardship.

Day 41, June 21st, 2020

Tomorrow came. Now let’s see what we can do about it. I’m currently reading a lovely alt!victorian romantic fantasy, so I’ll probably have no trouble getting in the mood. I’m slowly starting to remember the latter scenes in the novel, too.

Managed to expand and finish the scene!! Whoa. Only took an hour or so.

And I’ve realized I basically am writing pulp. Not even sorry. I kinda like it?

Since I’m on the move this weekend, I’m currently editing on a café’s terrace. I find myself enjoying it, and also understanding that I couldn’t write new words in this environment. But this actually works.

When I get going, and when I have the time, I get a lot done. (No surprises whatsoever, right?) Had to take a break to rest!

Day 42, June 22nd, 2020

Whoooooops. No editing today. Spent most of the day in a moving car. But hey—moving car. And I accidentally got the rest of the week off—I’ll try not only to finish a few short stories still waiting from last time, but also edit a few chapters of Johnny’s Girls. We’ve got a sneaky spying scene coming right up—looking forward to it!

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Photo by Krzysztof Kowalik on Unsplash.