I have the best mentor and even though sometimes I don't want to admit he is right, he is. He is an amazing writer and teacher. Below are some of the things he has said to me over the past year about my manuscript. Maybe you will see something in them that will help your writing too.
- While the writing here is crisp and clear, you may want to re-think this whole chapter - the problem is we've seen this scene before
- To make any reversal in feelings work, the interior moments, especially in the earlier pages have to work
- Be more specific!
- Remind us of why we are here
- Give me more inner thoughts, less action
- Give less description to characters that don't stick around
- Loosen up these scenes and allow more interior
- Give more reactions here, beyond the physical
- Vary your chapter beginnings
- Vary your chapter endings
- No adjective trains!
- Be precise!
- Locate the reader in both space and time at the beginning of each chapter
- Don't allow your characters to only feel something with their bodies, they must feel it in their thoughts
- Your dialogue here is a bit distracting, cut it down
- Vary your dialogue tags - they are too similar and too long
- There's too much movement in this scene - going through too many doors and rooms - get us there faster
- Slow down and let me be with your character in certain big moments
- Make sure your imagery makes sense
- Plant seeds earlier
- I need a better view of the room and the people in it
- Watch your formatting - make sure when you query that it all is the same - same indents - same letter choice
- Paragraph indents should be 5 not 3
- Watch Mom vs. my mom or her mom - watch how you capitalize or not
- Keep everything, every detail consistent
- You have a tick - the word peak - and you spell it wrong each time - peek - watch for this - watch for other ticks
- In any fight scene - be sure if specific moves - they are correctly done
So there you have it - from my mentor to you. I hope at least some of his helpful ideas help you and your writing too.
Oh - and I've been behind on posts - due to moving to BEND - Oregon --- and trying to revise for query of this book. I hope to have some good ANIMALIA news soon!!