Update: One Step Forward, One Step Back; or, Revision is a Thing

So, I paused moving forward with RIHASI last week to do some editing.

This wasn’t the “pause to delete a chapter” type of editing, which sometimes I will do because if I know I’m going to delete a chapter, then that chapter bugs me more and more the longer it sits there, waiting to be deleted. Eventually, I go back and take it out and stitch up the transition between the two chapters on each side, and then it’s done and I can stop thinking about it.

If you’re curious, that happened, for example, in Tarashana, where I initially had a chapter between leaving the starlit lands and arriving in the winter country — I moved everyone through the pass on screen, is what I’m saying. But not enough happened, less that I particularly liked, and after all the book was super long already, so I wound up cutting that entire chapter and doing a “time has passed” sentence after everyone is through the pass and looking down at the Convocation.

Or sometimes I may know a chapter is just not right, and that REALLY bugs me until I go back and fix it. That happened in The Floating Islands, where I cut chapter five and wrote a totally different chapter five twice. Yes, that was annoying.

Of course, sometimes I finish the whole thing and THEN do major revision, such as with the Death’s Lady series, where I deleted … I don’t remember … a huge chunk near the end and completely rewrote it. Even half-lost in the mists of time, this stands out as an absolutely massive revision. It’s the part where Jenna does some of the heavy lifting to get to the conclusion of the action plot. I’m not sure that’s clear, but I don’t want to drop a big spoiler here. Anyway, trust me on this, it was MASSIVE, leading to the “revision from Hell” tag that basically acted as a subtitle for this series for years and years, until I kind of recovered.

While on the topic of the Death’s Lady series, by the way, now that I’ve dropped the series into KU, I’m scheduling a big promo for the series to try to slam KU pages read way, way up for this series. A side effect of this promo is that if you didn’t pick up the whole series at my Patreon, you’ll have a chance to pick it up ALMOST that inexpensively in April. I’ll put something about that in the April newsletter, along with the first part of the story about the boys who climbed the rainbow. As you know, I’ll drop that complete story at my Patreon when I have it. However, it’s not finished yet, so I’m not sure when that will happen. It’s at five thousand words, give or take, and they’re just at the top of the rainbow and about to look around. Even though I have a vague notion what’s going to happen, I’m not sure what they’ll see.

But what I was actually going to say was this:

If you’ve recently read the Death’s Lady series, but you haven’t left a review, this would be a nice time to do that, either at Amazon or Goodreads. Reviews can be important in coaxing readers who may not be familiar with my work to pick up the series, ideally the whole series at once, and this is such a highly peculiar series, I expect reviews to be important.

However, back to RIHASI and revision:

This time it was smaller-scale revision, but it was bugging me. I was getting close to the end, and what I was thinking was, “Shouldn’t they have had this conversation long ago? Why are they having this conversation here?”

So I went back to look at different places this important conversation might have taken place and putting bits of it here and there in earlier scenes, and the whole process turned into kind of a thing that engulfed the week, so I’m about at the same number of words right now as I was this time last week. (110,000 or so.)

So the coming week will lead to forward progress, I expect. If life doesn’t interfere too much, I ought to be finishing this draft this week, but in fact a certain amount of interference is expected, so we’ll see. If I DO finish the draft, that will be great, but I may not put the book up for preorder until (a) I’ve done primary revision and sent the thing off to a few early readers, and (b) I’ve gotten comments back from one or two early readers. At that point, I should have a much better idea about further revision — how much, how long it might take — and then I will feel much more comfortable picking a preorder date. Which will be a month after the book drops at my Patreon, of course. I’m currently thinking May 2 / June 2, but that is a guess.

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2 thoughts on “Update: One Step Forward, One Step Back; or, Revision is a Thing”

  1. I am looking forward to Rihasi. I wonder if you could write a short story about Sinowa’s youngest boy from his first marriage. To me, he is the most interesting character of all, from Marag.

  2. I mean, I could? But it would be shadowed with tragedy, as we know he died young. That makes it pretty unlikely.

    References to him are more likely.

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