Which Pen, What Hem? (Editing Diary Part 2)

Welcome to my weekly series where I note the ups and down of editing my queer dieselpunk (murder) mystery! Read the first post in the series here.

Day 7 Cont’d

Thought I wouldn’t get all that much done, but ended up fixing chapter two till the end. Nothing happens in it. We’ll see how it goes with my beta!

Spent too much time on trying to find out which exact pen make and model would’ve meant something to my MC in 1945, what parts of rotary phones are called etc. Like—ages.

Day 8, May 19th 2020

Haven’t edited yet today, but I’ve opened the next chapter, #3, and it’s the chapter where my MCs meeeeeet! Excite!

Ps. Managed to get a page in late in the evening, barely.

Day 9, May 20th 2020

Got a few paragraphs in before I realised again—this is the chapter where they meeeet! I’ll need to block out a bigger chunk of time for it than I can spare at the moment.

Day 10, May 21th 2020

I’m finding myself trying to read on more than I’m actually editing—which is not a bad thing, since that is what I want the readers to do, right?

Killing some repetitive words today—my partner caught the ‘mentor’ in the first chapter, but I did the ‘other woman’ in all by myself.

I could’ve picked an easier romantic interest for my MC, but… where’s the fun in that?

Also, since I’m finally actually working on a novel again this year, I’m getting more hopeful about my general future as a writer person.

I’m nearing the end of chapter #3, and the copy is still relatively clean, which—thank you, November Vesna.

Day 11, May 22nd 2020

Spent a few minutes on a single sentence, and then decided to share the first version of it because—what the actual hell was I thinking?

Finally sitting down with enough leg room to cross her legs at the knees, after she’d made sure that the hem of her skirt fell politely over them, even though there was no helping the wrinkles she got while laying, unconscious, in the booth downstairs, she took a deep breath and turned to look at the other woman.

I’m still not sure what the final version of this fragment will be, but there. will. be. multiple sentences.

Day 12, May 23rd 2020

Skipped today. Oops. Got some good feedback on chapter two, though, so things are still moving ahead.

What was the feedback, you ask? Well, mostly that my expositional narration parts (let’s be civil and skip thw term infodump this time) could really use a dialogue structure. That’s one of the (almost innumerable) reasons I have a beta reader.

Day 13, May 24th 2020

Either due to yesterday’s evasion, or nicer weather today (unfortunately, it does count), I managed to finish chapter three today! And I found out what was wrong with the extra short chapter four—I’d misjudged the cliffhanger moment at the end of chapter three, so the two chapters actually got merged, like I had a hunch they would. The true cliffhanger was placed at the end of chapter four.

Which means I got the previous chapter four done today, too—yay!

I’m so much in love with my romantic interest that it’s almost painful. Wondering whether she’ll come across as too much to readers, though?

Oh, and here’s the current version of the sentence above, do enjoy.

She made sure that the hem of her skirt fell politely over her knees before crossing her legs. Even so, there was no helping the wrinkles in the fabric, the result of lying unconscious, in the booth downstairs.

Then she took a deep breath and turned to look at the otherworlder.

Yes, I did ask around on the internet about the world otherworlder, and I found an actual book series with that title. Figured, since I’m not going to use the term all that much, and it’s a pretty different sub-genre, and it’s most definitely not a keyword in my wordlbuilding, I’ll let it stay for now.

Onto chapter five four!


Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash.

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