Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Spinward Fringe Broadcast 6: Fragments - Best Update So Far!
This is a middle book, sitting between the first and last part of a trilogy. After working on this for about 10 months, I can say, middle books are bloody hard. They have to be interesting in their own right, but connect nicely with the first and third. I think I like the way Tolkien did it a lot more, write one long volume and cut it into three pieces. In the future I think that's what I'll end up doing if I ever do another trilogy again.
Anyway, back to the good news. The story is laid out, characters have challenges that they overcome or don't, a villain makes an appearance, and the whole crew goes through various trauma. Now that sounds like a Spinward Fringe book to me, and I know I'm going to really enjoy this last bit of writing.
When that writing is all finished, I'll be editing the book myself twice - once on screen, then on paper - making my changes and then handing it over to my editor. She'll work her magic and tell me if I actually have a good book, and where there might be problems. The necessary tuning will take place and normally I'd send it off to the distributors. Not this time, however.
No, this time I have a secret weapon! Three fantastic, qualified proof readers have accepted my request to work on this book after the normal steps have been taken. They live in three different countries, don't know each other, and have no idea who the other person is. It's a blind beta read so I can get three different opinions from three very different people. Their primary job will be to help with the polish of the book, but since they're all long time readers, their opinions about the story and character movement will have a great deal of weight too. No one will know who these Beta Readers are until they appear in the acknowledgments at the front of Broadcast 6. Even then, they may decide to use code names, prolonging the mystery.
Once they've finished and I've used their notes to improve the grammar and remove typos it'll go to the distributors. This one will appear on Smashwords first and it'll be the first Smashwords Spinward Fringe release with a full table of contents.
How long will all this take, you ask? Well, if I haven't written a great big turd, it shouldn't take longer than 4 weeks. I like what I have here though, even though the style is quite different from what you may expect, so I don't foresee a pile of problems.
I expect this book to weigh in at about 100,000 words, and it'll be priced at about a third of a new release eBook.
[Thoughts? Rants? Manifestos? Go ahead and post them below!]