Quaking Soul Update # 4

Monster

Quaking Soul is still a monster. Period. But the monster’s not quite so surly anymore. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still bad mannered, but not as full of teeth and bite.

The story’s also been through a second round of beta reading and I’m currently finishing up edits after beta feedback number two. The honing knife is getting a lot of use! It’s parred off about 7,000 words worth of flab.

So, what that means is Quaking Soul is headed to the professional editor soon. There was a slight hiccup in that the last editor I worked with was not available for this project, but through referrals, I found Felicia Chernesky. After talking with Felicia, I believe she’ll bring the quality of editing to Quaking Soul that’s required to make it shine…and behave itself.

With this coming up, I’ll be taking another break from the blog to focus on editing. This year will probably be full of starts and stops in the adventures, but I promise it’s still in the back of my mind, churning up new adventure ideas.

I will return soon with more adventure and Quaking Soul updates!

Until then, blessings,

Jennifer

P.S. I’ve also contacted a friend about the cover for Quaking Soul. As you might imagine, I’m incredibly excited to see this come together. I’ll be sure to share Justin’s work soon!

Quaking Soul Update Number 3… I Think

Knife - Globe Hunters Story

Quaking Soul has teeth and a surly personality all its own. Compared to The Adventure, which finally weighed in at about 36,600 words, Quaking Soul is a monster at 133,400 words (current count). Wrestling with this beast requires so much more than I originally anticipated! And I relish the challenge. I have learned, however, that to conquer this beast and not have it haunt me later, I have to allow for enough time to perfect my weapons. For instance, the word-cutting dagger is obviously a bit rusty.

MonsterSo, as I sharpen my dagger and Quaking Soul glares back at me, I take courage from the 85% edit I’ve accomplished so far from my beta readers. There are a few scars (yes, this means something in the story) that I need to give Quaking Soul before the beta edit will be 100% complete. Hopefully, that wrestling match will only take till the end of the month.

Then I will call in backup from a larger artillery than my own. In other words, Quaking Soul will face the champion, a professional editor. (Cue evil laugh. Take that you surly monster!)

Ahem, pardon my envisioned future victory. Once all my weapons are nicely sharpened and Quaking Soul has been subdued, it’ll be time to package it into a lovely cage…errr, to format the book.

Hopefully, this campaign will be nicely wrapped up by Spring 2020. (Fingers crossed). Now, on to victory!

***

In other news, thank you for sticking with my fun. As the above wrestling match may take a great deal of my attention, and it’s the holiday season, I’m going to take my usual December break to spend time with the family.

I hope your own holidays are filled with friends and family, and you take away some wonderful memories.

Until January, blessings,

Jennifer

 

False Summit

False Summit

In Colorado, there’s this thing that people do. It’s called hiking 14ers. Let me explain. The Rocky Mountains run through the state and gift it, if you will, with more than fifty peaks over 14,000 feet. (There are over 500 13ers, but we won’t even go there today.)

So you see, there are these towering peaks in the backyard and it’s almost expected that you’ve hiked some of those giants, especially if you’re a native. Some people even hike all of them, but now I’m getting off topic.

I’ve hiked maybe a half dozen 14ers. If you have too, then you might be familiar with the term ‘false summit.’ If you’re not, picture this, you wake up before the sun is even a hint in the sky and start down the trail toward the mountain. As the sun rises and you leave the tree line behind, you see this domed shape up ahead. Although your lungs burn and your legs ache, you smile because you can see the top.

Over the next hour, you keep glancing at that towering dome, just picturing the view from the top. When you give one last push against the altitude to summit, a sinking feeling starts to build in your belly because, as you crest the crown of the dome, it’s not the tallest thing around. In fact, on the far side of it is a narrow ridge and at the other end of that ridge is what, in reality, is the 14,000 foot summit.

This is a false summit. It’s all you can see until you top it and so you think you’re about there, but when you actually reach that spot, you realize there’s another hours’ worth of hiking ahead to reach the destination.

Why do I tell you all this? Because I’m on that false summit with Quaking Soul. I’ve pushed to edit it and make it the best I could. After seeing the final personal edit, it felt finished. But now the beta comments are back and I see the ridge connecting my latest draft to the rest of the mountain.

There’s a lot of work ahead and it’d be super easy to get discouraged, but I’ve found in climbing mountains and in writing, that this is one of the most exciting times of the process as well. This is where you start to climb above everything else and the magnificent expanse of the world rolls out before you with the crystal clarity of thin air. This is where the story truly starts to shine with those jewels that only existed in the writer’s head when she began.

It’d be easy to crest that false summit and turn around thinking, ‘This isn’t worth it.’ But oh boy is it worth it! For me right now, it’s time to press on to edit again. Whatever it is for you, I encourage you to do the same.

On a side note, I do have an adventure for this coming month set up. So I’ll see you next week to go exploring =)

Blessings,

Jennifer

Beta comments edit setup

Set up to start editing from Beta comments. I have some amazing Beta readers!

I’m Alive!

Quaking Soul Manuscript

Hello Dear Readers!

I’m checking in to let you know I’m still alive after my hiatus for book editing.

Here’s my progress report. This last week, I finished my personal edit on Quaking Soul. It took almost 3 weeks longer than I’d planned, but as someone told me recently, most everything takes longer than you think it should. Such is life. Plus, I do believe the extra time did the book good and not harm.

Now the book is out to beta readers. This is both exciting and terrifying. I’d much rather these amazing readers find the issues in the story than a reader down the road after the book’s been published, but hearing feedback can be heart wrenching. This is my book-baby. I’ve labored over it with sweat and tears! Now tear it apart and tell me what’s glaringly wrong with it! (I will now be donning my thick-skin in order to survive this ordeal.)

In the mean time, while I wait for beta reader feedback, I will be working on other book stuff such as the back blurb for the book and cover design. Although difficult in its own way, these things are not as mind intensive as editing. What that means for the blog? I’ll be posting a new adventure next week.

So thank you for your patience! I’ll see you next week for a whole new adventure story.

Blessings,

Jennifer