Thursday, November 15, 2012
Dealing with a very old manuscript #amwriting
Months ago I wrote about finding the carbon copy of a manuscript, and looking at it for plot. The plot though had a few holes seemed solid and the characters interesting. This was a story that was nearly published years ago except for a matter of the timing of the submission. Put aside and forgotten until clearing out a file cabinet. I decided I would re-write it. The story was YA or one of those kind of science fiction/fantasy stories to be read by anyone. The major characters were in the 18 to 20 year age range. So I have begun to reconctruct the story and it's been an interesting study in what flies and what doesn't these days.
There were stylistic problems that weren't back there. Using dialogue tags has changed. Used to read "said John." Now reads "John said." Another was back story. The book began with an entire chapter giving the back story of the main character of the story. Actually, this seemed boring to me today. So I had to deconstruct the first chapter bringing the action to the fore and removing a lot, lot of the back story. Another problem was in that this was a carbon copy and occasionally there was a slipage problem where the letters of a word were written over each other. Some of these words will never be recovered. That's no real problem since finding words is what writers do.
The final problem was of a different nature. My head is in a different place than it was when I first wrote the book. Won't go into what really happened to my head. We all grow and mature. 40 plus years ago, I was a mother of three and had just adopted a biracial child. Was living in a small Western Pa town where tolerance was an interesting view of people and their predjudices or what they viewed as being liberal. So some of these things had entered into the writing. Will I take them all out. Probably not. Since this book has some interesting minor characters most will stay but they will be tempered by maturity. Now I must get back to work on what was once The World Has Come Of Age and is now The Goddesses of Er. As for the last word in the title, I hope I haven't borrowed it from another writer. That word can be changed but I needed a title so I could write the book.