Tuesday, May 23, 2006


You know, it's a really good thing that I'm not trying to write to a market, because I would be driving myself insane.

I'm in an odd place, just now. Because I'm revising I'm not yet sending out queries, but I'm not head-down writing all new stuff either. The book is done, I'm just tweaking it to make it better--and at the same time, researching my publishing possibilities. I have one foot on each side of the great divide, writing and marketing.

So if I was susceptible to rumors about "the market", this is the point where I could seriously mess up my book. (Sexy sells? Quick, put in more sex! First person doesn't sell? Quick, change to third!) Ack. Of course there's nothing I can do about the fact that it's a historical. I do listen with interest when folks talk about the historical trends (down, up, dead, just on the verge, coming back), but that part is not going to change.

Yet I am altering the book slightly to integrate some feedback from agents. Heck, when one of THE primary movers and shakers in historical publishing tells me the book would be stronger with a bigger presence from real historical characters? If I can do that, and only make the book deeper, you can bet I will.

It's a fine line, isn't it? I guess it all comes down to what I've talked about before, whether the changes resonate with me or not as being true to the book. Changing to third would kill it. Changing the MC would kill it. Adding in a scene with the king present? Just bonus.

I still haven't got Chaucer in there, though. He'll just have to wait until the next book.

Medieval Word of the Day: argol: The tartar deposited from wines completely fermented, and adhering to the sides of the casks as a hard crust; crude bitartrate of potassium, which, when purified, becomes cream of tartar.


Granny Grimes said...


It _is_ a fine line. Don't worry, though--I don't think you are constitutionally capable of crossing over to the Dark (writing purely for "the market") Side. It only makes sense to sift through the feedback (especially that all-important feedback from agents) and glean from it some good ideas. Heck, that's just practical. Just rely on your gut instincts and you'll do fine.

Oh, and finish the edits already, so I can read what you've done to it. [g]


Susan Adrian said...


The edits do seem to be taking a long time, don't they? Well, good news today. 93% done. Now up over 95,000 words. (With the 2000 or so I deleted, that means I've added about 9000 words.) Yay me!


Granny Grimes said...


Only 93% done? Gee, I would've thought at least 93.457% by now. {g,d&r}

Seriously, you're doing great. And the edits really aren't taking that long at all, especially when you consider how much new material you're adding. {s}


JK said...

Congrats on the increased word count - way to go! I don't think you're the type of person to pander to trends, though...so I'm nothing thinking you're going to make any edits that will change your baby; rather, just those changes that will add a little depth and more interest.

I'm sure it's a little discombobulating to be walking that divide line, though - and interesting, all at the same time. I soooo can't wait to read this!!


sara said...

95 k? Wow! You've really buffed up that word count!

I remember that we talked about historical characters in historicals and how a lot of people like them. If you can sneak in some and add depth to the book at the same time, so much the better!

I think the danger in that "fine line" is when you change things and, deep down, you think it was better before. It'll go on bugging you, or at least it'd bug me. *g* Me, I don't think you run any risk of that.

/Sara E

Susan Adrian said...

Linda: Well, I didn't include the .457%. It's in my head, though. {g}

Julie: Thanks for the compliment! I hope I'm not the sort that would cross over into pandering either. It IS an interesting place to find myself in, though. Almost to marketing.

Sara: Yes, I think the critical point is whether it feels right to you as the author. You have to trust your own internal critic at some point! And yay, I'm happy on the word count! {s}