Father Figure

365 Challenge: Day 286 – Break

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Break: interruption (in continuity, sequence, or course) — as ‘Father Figure’ was sent to beta readers

break

 

I submitted the second draft of ‘Father Figure’ to the beta reader team last night. I asked for feedback in three (3) weeks by January 11, 2018, which gives me a break from writing and editing. It is much needed, as my head is a pile of goo right now. I plan to take the week off between the holidays, only to write the 365 Daily Challenge posts, and to read a few books. I will start drafting the 2018 marketing plan for Watching Glass Shatter right after the new year, then dive into the short story collection, beginning with Ethan.

I’ve updated the draft/tentative book summary for Father Figure below. My second novel has ~115K words (20% longer than Glass) and stands at 318 pages, which is funny, as that’s my birth date. It’s broken into 32 chapters with two primary characters and timelines. It’s contemporary fiction, centered around family drama, with a few elements of romance, mystery and suspense. It also has a relatively sizable diversity theme, and potentially geared towards young adults, but that’s not the primary focus. I’m still deciding how I feel about it… some moments, I think it’s 90% done and just requires a bit of input on a few open items. Other times, I am curious if it should be two separate books with more intensity added to separate the two story-lines. I look forward to the break and hearing all the beta reader thoughts. Hopefully it sounds intriguing! Many thanks to the team reading this draft.

Summary of Father Figure (UPDATED)

  • Amalia Graeme, sheltered and abused for most her life in Mississippi, longs to escape her difficult family and small hometown in 1984. When her older brother returns with his best friend by his side, Amalia is tempted to have her first experience with a boy that summer. As they head off to college for her first year and his senior year, she begins to learn about life and love, battling her loss of innocence with a new attraction she’s developed to an older professor. After she suffers a few personal tragedies, Amalia is forced to head back home, uncertain how to handle the permanent impacts on her life and future. No matter where she turns, someone or something always takes away the possibility of her hope to find happiness and to escape.
  • Brianna Porter is a typical angst-ridden teenager living in New York City in 2004, struggling to choose a college, build confidence in herself and interpret intimidating and growing feelings for her best friend. But for Brianna, these paralytic decisions all stem from desperately needing to meet the father whom her mother refuses to discuss, before she can accept her own identity and determine her life purpose. When her best friend suggests hiring a detective, and they stumble upon her mother’s old journal, Brianna learns a shocking secret about her father, rocked by a truth that could completely change both their futures. It may be too late to deal with the impacts of unleashing a history that was meant to stay buried for many reasons. When it leads to someone’s death, Brianna must come to terms with the choices she’s made and what is left of her own future.

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, can be purchased on Amazon @ http://mybook.to/WGS. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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My Novel: Father Figure – Status

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I’m happy to report everything is on schedule for Father Figure to be released in early 2018 (by March). Discussions with the publisher will begin after the Thanksgiving holiday to set the publication date and begin considering book covers. Below is the current status of this novel:

writer

Editing Round 2 (November 2017)

  • All editing has been completed. After the first round of beta reading at the end of September, I removed/re-structured about 20% of the content and added 20% new or enhanced story arcs. The novel is stronger and more powerful in the current version, but it is not yet finished.
  • I have added more mystery and suspense to the beginning of this work, but I think it may need a little more splash to immediately pull in readers. I’ll decide next week once I finish a read-thru.

Next Steps (December 2017)

  • Over the next week, I plan to read the book aloud to myself, making notes and correcting anything that sounds awkward or needs some minor adjustments. The target is to be complete on Friday 12/1 — one week from today.
  • I will prepare an overview for a group of 5 to 8 beta readers for a second read-thru. I will have a series of questions plus a list of a few things I am still considering changing. I want to get both sets of feedback before I finish the final version for proofreading. Beta readers will have from 12/1 thru 12/10 to read the book and provide feedback.
  • Once I have all input, I will make final revisions and send the book off to an editor and the publisher to design the cover and provide any final input. The target is to complete the final version from 12/11 through 12/31.

What’s on the author’s mind?

  • I need to select the beta readers. I am ‘starting from scratch’ with the next read-thru meaning I am not automatically sending it to the group who read the September version. If you are interested, let me know and we can discuss. I want to get a broad range of feedback, but it also needs to be fairly detailed, constructive, and analytical. I received good feedback in the first round, but I’m pushing harder in this next round to truly get to the heart of the book and determine what if anything is not working.
  • It’s a good feeling to see the growth in my writing since ‘Watching Glass Shatter’ was written almost one year ago. My style has evolved in a few ways, ranging from a bit less wordy to a stronger voice with each character. Having fewer characters to work with provided an opportunity to reach deeper into each person’s emotions; I’m hoping there is a more intense connection with readers in this novel. In Watching Glass Shatter, they were all relatively good people, despite a few annoying habits and secrets. In Father Figure, there’s a fair balance of good versus evil in our new characters, and well… it’s too early to say much, but I’ll certainly reveal…

I appreciate everyone’s input and feedback. Thank you and have a great weekend!

 

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Summary of Father Figure (only read if you’re new to the book)

  • Amalia Graeme, sheltered and abused for most her life in Mississippi, longs to escape her difficult family and small hometown in 1984. When her older brother returns with his best friend, Amalia is tempted to have her first experience with a boy that summer. As they head off to college for her first year and his senior year, she begins to learn about life and love, battling her loss of innocence with the attraction she’s developed to an older professor. After she suffers a few personal tragedies, Amalia is forced to head back home, uncertain how to handle the permanent impacts on her life and future. No matter where she turns, someone or something always takes away her possibility of hope.
  • Brianna Porter is desperate to discover the purpose of her life, develop confidence in who she is, accept the consequences of who she has fallen in love with, and discover her father’s identity. Set twenty years in the future in New York City, there’s a connection between these two women’s stories that is about to be discovered. As Brianna stumbles upon her mother’s old journal, she learns a shocking secret about her father, rocked by a truth that could completely change the future. It may be too late to deal with the impacts of unleashing a history that was meant to stay buried for many reasons. When it leads to someone’s death, Brianna must come to terms with the choices she’s made and what is left of her own future.

 

About Me
I am an author who recently published his debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, which has been well received my readers. I am writing my second novel, Father Figure, with plans to finish and submit it to a publisher in December, 2017. As part of the process to engage with my fans and followers, I am publishing a regular status on the progress of this second book. For a description of this book, check out the post where my fans voted for this book as my second novel.

Beyond these two books, I have a number of short stories, poems and other novels in various shapes and forms. I also read A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, Tags, Awards, Age/Genre/Book Reads and Author Alerts, as well as the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge.

You can also access my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

My Novel: Father Figure (Week 13 – Thursday, November 2nd, 2017)

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It’s been a few weeks since I posted the current status of my second novel, Father Figure. As many of you know, my debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, launched 3 weeks ago and has taken over a majority of my time. In between marketing plans, book review, blog tours and promotions, I have been slowly making progress with all the edits for the next round of Father Figure beta reading. When I set a date, I don’t change it unless absolutely necessary; I’m happy to report I am still on target for an early 2018 release. Below is the current status:

writer

Status: Thursday, November 2, 2017 – Week #13

 

Round 1 Edit – The First Draft

  • Every potential change suggested by the initial beta reading team has been reviewed, digested and addressed with the exception of 3 major items that all require a dedicated about of time where I can focus and plan. This is where I need to start turning off the internet for 4 hours each day to dive into the details without interruption.  To give you a flavor of what I am referring to:
    • Add more raw/griping emotion to the initial few chapters and remove/move some of the background information (Get less wordy and get into the action!)
    • Tighten up the character details, voice and tone for 1 protagonist who is a little too wishy-washy (Be clear on what she wants from others!)
    • Lengthen and draw out the ending a bit more to keep the suspense even more climactic (Don’t end this journey so quickly!)

 

Next Steps: Plan for Upcoming Week

  • Complete editing for 2 of the 3 key areas, as noted above
  • Read entire novel aloud with a focus on dialogue and point-of-view to ensure everything is consistent, clear and distinct
  • Determine who is interested in being a beta reader for Round 2 (target for readers to review from 11/20 to 11/30)

 

What’s on the author’s mind?

  • How believable do readers expect the plot of a novel to be? For example, if in reality, a situation occurs 2% of the time, and the book takes advantage of that situation, is it fair to judge the author or book by calling it out as unbelievable? Some say books should push the envelope and encourage limitless boundaries. Others feel if its a contemporary novel it should be something more common and relatable. I tend to fall somewhere in the middle. If the actual occurrence of the situation happening is fairly minimal, but still achievable, I think the author should do as much as possible in the novel’s narrative, dialogue and tone to clearly explain and show why even though it’s rare, it can happen. How do you feel?
  • Sometimes a character in a book is going on a journey and has certain beliefs or ideas about life. It may be different than the readers’ beliefs or expectations on how the journey should happen. There may be less action and more conversation in the story to help the character determine their goals. How do readers feel about this being a bigger part of the plot of a book? For instance, if someone is trying to make a decision as part of their story arc, is putting them through a few situations that might see like inconsistent behavior for them considered ‘acceptable’ or ‘frustrating’ to the reader? How do you feel?

 

I appreciate everyone’s input and feedback. Thank you and have a great week!

 

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Summary of Father Figure (only read if you’re new to the book)

  • Amalia Graeme, sheltered and abused for most her life in Mississippi, longs to escape her difficult family and small hometown in 1984. When her older brother returns with his best friend, Amalia is tempted to have her first experience with a boy that summer. As they head off to college for her first year and his senior year, she begins to learn about life and love, battling her loss of innocence with the attraction she’s developed to an older professor. After she suffers a few personal tragedies, Amalia is forced to head back home, uncertain how to handle the permanent impacts on her life and future. No matter where she turns, someone or something always takes away her possibility of hope.
  • Brianna Porter is desperate to discover the purpose of her life, develop confidence in who she is, accept the consequences of who she has fallen in love with, and discover her father’s identity. Set twenty years in the future in New York City, there’s a connection between these two women’s stories that is about to be discovered. As Brianna stumbles upon her mother’s old journal, she learns a shocking secret about her father, rocked by a truth that could completely change the future. It may be too late to deal with the impacts of unleashing a history that was meant to stay buried for many reasons. When it leads to someone’s death, Brianna must come to terms with the choices she’s made and what is left of her own future.

 

About Me
I am a writer. I recently published my first novel, Watching Glass Shatter, with multiple 5-star reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. I am writing my second novel, Father Figure, with plans to finish and submit it to a publisher in December, 2017. As part of the process to engage with my fans and followers, I am publishing a weekly status on the progress of this second book. For a description of this book, check out the post where my friends and followers voted for this book as my second novel.

Beyond these two books, I have a number of short stories, poems and other novels in various shapes and forms. I also read A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, Tags, Awards, Age/Genre/Book Reads and Author Alerts, as well as the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge.

You can also access my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

My Novel: Father Figure (Week 12 – Sunday, October 8th, 2017)

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Welcome Back! When I last updated everyone, I had sent a very early alpha/beta read to several people to review while I was away on vacation. I returned earlier this week and am ready to get back into the swing of things. I had to take a short hiatus for two days since returning so I could focus on my first novel, ‘Watching Glass Shatter,’ as a few things came up (cover and final editing!); however, I squeezed in a couple of days focus on ‘Father Figure’ towards the end of the week. Below is the current week’s status:

writer

Status:  Sunday, October 8, 2017 – Week #12

  • Round 1 Edit – The First Draft
    • I read all of the feedback from the alpha/beta reading team. I am very appreciative to everyone who took the time to read my draft, answer the ten primary questions, suggest areas for improvement and fix some of the grammar/spelling items I missed. Overall, it was a successful process that has definitely provided me clear direction on what I need to focus on next.
    • I broke down all the suggestions into three key areas: (1) easy fixes, (2) mid-level fixes and (3) hard fixes. By this morning, I’ve completed all the (1) easy and (2) mid-level fixes in the next version. What remains are the (3) hard fixes — approximately 20 areas that need to be thought through before I can begin any additional changes. More on these items in the area below for the upcoming week’s plans.

 

Next Steps: Plan for Upcoming Week

  • Focus on the ’20’ areas for improvement. I will map out a plan for each of the items and introduce 5 of the 20 changes next week. I will work on the other 15 the following week. My goal is to be done with the next version before October 31st so that I can send out for the next ‘beta read’ version.
  • Key ares to focus on include:
    • I’m considering rolling back from a 1998/2018 time period to a 1983/2003 time period. This allows me more flexibility in terms of character arc matching background setting — to help with a few rationale and believe-ability concerns.
    • I’m considering moving the location setting for one arc from Ohio to Mississippi. It fits better with my character arc and background setting and will help me accomplish more realistic portrayals of what’s happening.
    • Some of the background in the first few chapters needs to be condensed. It’s a bit wordy and subsequently delays me from getting to the good part of the story action in an early enough fashion.
    • Refine a few character personality issues. A few readers loved them, a few thought there were some discrepancies in personality and actions.
    • Match voice and dialogue for each character more distinctively and consistently. Some areas were very tight. Some were a little weak. A few folks thought the characters were quite alive, jumping off the page. A few thought the dialogue wasn’t as unique as it needs to be.
    • The ending was a little too rushed. It needed a few more chapters to flush out the reactions after the big climax scenes.

What’s on the author’s mind?

  • Although I’ve been through the alpha/beta read process in my first novel, Watching Glass Shatter, I learned a lot in my approach for my second novel, Father Figure. Given I rushed the last few days to leave for vacation, it all came together about as well as I’d hoped; however, it could have been better had I made some additional time to prep everyone. I should have had more clear questions and provided a stronger picture to the readers of what areas still needed work. Unfortunately, it left a few folks thinking it was a finished product, and others thought it was supposed to be error-free. Once I clarified, the process went a lot smoother. I have a good plan for the next round!
  • It’s amazing to see how people’s opinions can range on the same material. 1 beta reader loved the first 5 to 6 chapters, but thought the rest was not as good. Another beta felt the first 5 to 6 chapters moved too slowly, but highlighted the rest as fantastic. My biggest takeaway, besides agreeing that everyone is probably right, is that I have to get to the crux of what the readers liked and disliked, so I can decide what my intention is versus what actually happened in the story. I love this process. I love hearing why someone thought a particular scene was brilliant and another person felt the dialogue was off, or the setting was weak or the plot was not believable.  As a writer, it’s a challenge to apply what I hear to the direction I want to take. I am grateful for such strong and open-minded beta readers, as it has been very helpful to hear all sides and angles.
  • I’m really excited to dive into these changes next week. I have so many creative juices flowing right now, I don’t know what to do with myself!

 

Side Note: ‘Watching Glass Shatter’ is nearly complete. I will have a COVER REVEAL and LAUNCH DATE within the next week. Look for the post soon!!!

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Summary of Father Figure (only read if you’re new to the book)

  • Amalia Graeme, sheltered and abused for most her life in Mississippi, longs to escape her difficult family and small hometown in 1984. When her older brother returns with his best friend, Amalia is tempted to have her first experience with a boy that summer. As they head off to college for her first year and his senior year, she begins to learn about life and love, battling her loss of innocence with the attraction she’s developed to an older professor. After she suffers a few personal tragedies, Amalia is forced to head back home, uncertain how to handle the permanent impacts on her life and future. No matter where she turns, someone or something always takes away her possibility of hope.
  • Brianna Porter is desperate to discover the purpose of her life, develop confidence in who she is, accept the consequences of who she has fallen in love with, and discover her father’s identity. Set twenty years in the future in New York City, there’s a connection between these two women’s stories that is about to be discovered. As Brianna stumbles upon her mother’s old journal, she learns a shocking secret about her father, rocked by a truth that could completely change the future. It may be too late to deal with the impacts of unleashing a history that was meant to stay buried for many reasons. When it leads to someone’s death, Brianna must come to terms with the choices she’s made and what is left of her own future.

 

About Me
I am a writer. I am have signed a contract for a publisher on my first book, Watching Glass Shatter. To see more, please check out the website for this novel where you will find the first 3 chapters, character bios and sample quotes.

I am writing my second novel, Father Figure, with plans to finish and submit it to a publisher in November, 2017. As part of the process to engage with my fans and followers, I am publishing a weekly status on the progress of this second book. For a description of this book, check out the post where my friends and followers voted for this book as my second novel.

Beyond these two books, I have a number of short stories, poems and other novels in various shapes and forms. I also read A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, Tags, Awards, Age/Genre/Book Reads and Author Spotlights, as well as the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge.

You can also access my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

My Novel: Father Figure (Week 11 – Friday, September 15th, 2017) – Sending to Beta Readers Tonight

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Round 1 Edits are complete. I’ve even incorporated a few pieces of feedback on the first two chapters from the beta reading team. I feel sadness over putting the novel on hiatus for two weeks, but the break will give me the energy boost when I return from vacation to power through the next phase. In the meantime, this will be the last Father Figure update until Friday 10/6. For now, I am thrilled to present Father Figure’s weekly status:

writer

Status:  Friday, September 15, 2017 – Week #11

  • Round 1 Edit – The First Draft
    • All grammar and spelling has been corrected to the best of my ability. I plan to step away for a few weeks and look at it again with a fresh set of eyes, as I know I’ll find a few minor updates once I’m relaxed. Those types of items will be easy to fix in Round 2 Editing.
    • I removed 5% of the pages / content, leaving me at 378 pages and 112K words. I know I have another 5% that will need to be cut to clean up excess wordiness, but I plan to wait until after beta readers have some input before I slash and burn!
    • I corrected 95% of the perspective or point of view (POV) issues that I could find. I’ll fix the remaining ones after receiving beta feedback as depending on whether I keep a few small sections, the POV issues may disappear on their own.
    • Character and setting descriptions have been enhanced and made consistent throughout all chapters.
    • It will be released to a few beta readers this evening!

 

Next Steps: Plan for Next Few Weeks

  • Vacation: 9/17 thru 10/2 – No work to be done on Father Figure.
  • Round 2 Edits (beta feedback incorporation) will occur from 10/3 thru 10/20.

What’s on the author’s mind?

  • I am looking forward to putting this out of my focus for two weeks, but I’m also looking forward to jumping right back in on 10/3 to review beta feedback and begin Round 2 Editing. I hope it only takes 2 to 3 weeks to finish this effort, as I’d like to send it to agents and the publisher in early November, pending how much remaining work I have to do with Watching Glass Shatter, my first novel. I’m really excited to think about this second one coming to a conclusion, but also shocked that it will have taken just under 4 months to dream, write and edit a ~375 page novel.
  • In October, it will be time to start thinking about novel #3. I already have ideas, but I will not let myself work on it until  Watching Glass Shatter is on on the market and the initial 30 days of advertising and sales have occurred. Anyone interested in participating in another poll again to let readers and fans pick the third novel?
  • In November, Book Reviews, Blog Tours and Interviews will be the priority for Watching Glass Shatter, but I will also prepare an outline for novel #3. While Watching Glass Shatter starts to enter normal reader mode, around 12/1, I’d like to start writing again, assuming Father Figure’s edits are complete and in final stage review with the publisher.

 

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Summary of Father Figure (only read if you’re new to the book)

  • Amalia Graeme, sheltered and abused for most her life in Mississippi, longs to escape her difficult family and small hometown in 1984. When her older brother returns with his best friend, Amalia is tempted to have her first experience with a boy that summer. As they head off to college for her first year and his senior year, she begins to learn about life and love, battling her loss of innocence with the attraction she’s developed to an older professor. After she suffers a few personal tragedies, Amalia is forced to head back home, uncertain how to handle the permanent impacts on her life and future. No matter where she turns, someone or something always takes away her possibility of hope.
  • Brianna Porter is desperate to discover the purpose of her life, develop confidence in who she is, accept the consequences of who she has fallen in love with, and discover her father’s identity. Set twenty years in the future in New York City, there’s a connection between these two women’s stories that is about to be discovered. As Brianna stumbles upon her mother’s old journal, she learns a shocking secret about her father, rocked by a truth that could completely change the future. It may be too late to deal with the impacts of unleashing a history that was meant to stay buried for many reasons. When it leads to someone’s death, Brianna must come to terms with the choices she’s made and what is left of her own future.

 

About Me
I am a writer. I am have signed a contract for a publisher on my first book, Watching a Glass Shatter. To see more, please check out the website for this novel where you will find the first 3 chapters, character bios and sample quotes.

I am writing my second novel, Father Figure, with plans to finish and submit it to a publisher in November, 2017. As part of the process to engage with my fans and followers, I am publishing a weekly status on the progress of this second book. For a description of this book, check out the post where my friends and followers voted for this book as my second novel.

Beyond these two books, I have a number of short stories, poems and other novels in various shapes and forms. I also read A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, Tags, Awards, Age/Genre/Book Reads and Author Spotlights, as well as the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge.

You can also access my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

My Novel: Father Figure (Week 10 – Friday, September 8th, 2017)

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Did you ever have one of those weeks where things just don’t go as well as you planned? I finally had one, but it’s totally fine. It was a banner week in terms of becoming an author, but I had to split my time between Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure which meant I didn’t meet all my goals. Four of my five days this week were devoted to a holiday, returning from the short trip to LA and launching the new author website. As a result, I only had one day to work on the new novel, but I am really excited to present Father Figure’s weekly status:

writer

Status:  Friday, September 8, 2017 – Week #10

  • Round 1 Edit – The First Draft
    • I read thru 75% (285 of 380 pages) and edited them for all grammatical and spelling errors.
    • I marked 10 areas for content removal or reduction.
    • I cleaned up most of the point of view issues.

Next Steps: Plan for Week #11

  • Round 1 Edit – The First Draft
    • Mon – Finish reading remaining 25% and correct grammar and spelling
    • Tues – Finish marking POV issues and content removal options
    • Wed – Fix POV issues
    • Thurs – Update character and setting descriptions throughout whole book
    • Fri – Remove and adjust areas of content change
  • Send first draft to 5 beta readers
  • Prepare for vacation 9/17 thru 10/1 – No work to be done on Father Figure!

What’s on the author’s mind?

  • I am behind this week, but I will finish on schedule next week. And I am excited to begin sharing it with beta readers.
  • I adore ~15 chapters in the middle where even as the author, I’m flipping pages so quickly because the suspense is killing me. Maybe it’s because I know the content, but to see what the characters go through seems really amazing. I feel like I found the right balance of dialogue and description to stop and start the thrills, it makes readers want to dive in. I could be wrong, but I think I might have done quite well in this section.

 

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Summary of Father Figure (only read if you’re new to the book)

  • Amalia Graeme, sheltered and abused for most her life in Mississippi, longs to escape her difficult family and small hometown in 1984. When her older brother returns with his best friend, Amalia is tempted to have her first experience with a boy that summer. As they head off to college for her first year and his senior year, she begins to learn about life and love, battling her loss of innocence with the attraction she’s developed to an older professor. After she suffers a few personal tragedies, Amalia is forced to head back home, uncertain how to handle the permanent impacts on her life and future. No matter where she turns, someone or something always takes away her possibility of hope.
  • Brianna Porter is desperate to discover the purpose of her life, develop confidence in who she is, accept the consequences of who she has fallen in love with, and discover her father’s identity. Set twenty years in the future in New York City, there’s a connection between these two women’s stories that is about to be discovered. As Brianna stumbles upon her mother’s old journal, she learns a shocking secret about her father, rocked by a truth that could completely change the future. It may be too late to deal with the impacts of unleashing a history that was meant to stay buried for many reasons. When it leads to someone’s death, Brianna must come to terms with the choices she’s made and what is left of her own future.

 

About Me
I am a writer. I am have signed a contract for a publisher on my first book, Watching a Glass Shatter. To see more, please check out the website for this novel where you will find the first 3 chapters, character bios and sample quotes.

I am writing my second novel, Father Figure, with plans to finish and submit it to a publisher in November, 2017. As part of the process to engage with my fans and followers, I am publishing a weekly status on the progress of this second book. For a description of this book, check out the post where my friends and followers voted for this book as my second novel.

Beyond these two books, I have a number of short stories, poems and other novels in various shapes and forms. I also read A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, Tags, Awards, Age/Genre/Book Reads and Author Spotlights, as well as the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge.

You can also access my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

My Novel: Father Figure (Week 9 – Friday, September 1st, 2017)

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I am heading out of town for a long weekend getaway feeling absolutely thrilled with the current state of this book. I am really excited to present Father Figure’s weekly status:

writer

Status:  Friday, September 1, 2017 – Week #9

  • Chapters 27 thru 28
    • The goal was achieved. By Monday morning, the first draft of the book was complete at 345 pages, 28 chapters and 103K words. It felt amazing to know that I had accomplished so much in so little time (9 weeks!). I shut down the laptop by mid-afternoon to give myself off from writing the rest of the day. A break was in need… at least until I began reading it Tuesday morning. :O
  • Chapters 29 thru 32
    • My first editing step was to count the pages for each chapter. I suddenly found that while chapters 6 thru 28 each held between 9 and 13 pages, there were vast differences in the page count for chapters 1 thru 5. One chapter had 32 pages while another had 28. Unacceptable! I spent the morning fixing the outline and ultimately decided to split a few chapters in half and add in more content to balance the story. It needed to hold 50% focus on each of the two primary characters. By Thursday, I drafted an additional 40 pages so that we now stand at a fully completed first draft with 385 pages, 32 chapters and 111K words. Yes, it needs to be reduced by at least ten percent before I let anyone review it during the first beta reading phase.
  • Round 1 Edit
    • I skim-read the entire novel on Friday morning to make notes on all the physical characteristics about each character and every location or setting, verifying consistency and noting any holes.

 

Next Steps: Plan for Week #10

  • Round 1 Edit – The First Draft
    • When I return after Labor Day, I will begin the re-read process. Below are the steps I plan for next week:
      • Tues / Wed – Read the entire novel from start to finish to fix any grammar or spelling issues
      • Thurs – Highlight areas that are weak, e.g. candidates to cut or re-write
      • Thurs – Update character and setting descriptions throughout whole book
      • Fri – Highlight areas where the POV or Perspective is inconsistent
  • Finalize who will be the list of the first 3 to 5 beta readers
    • I will be ready to share between 9/17 – 10/1 while I’m in North Carolina and Florida on vacation.
    • If you have time to read while I’m away to provide feedback when I return, private message me on Twitter, Facebook or jamesjcudney4@gmail.com.

 

What’s on the author’s mind?

  • The ending is no longer in debate. As I finished writing the last chapter yesterday, I stumbled upon a hidden gem I’d left in a few previous chapters that needed to be tidied up a bit. A surge of beauty formed inside my head, leading me to write a conclusion that I absolutely adore. I might even be happy enough with it that I don’t feel the need to consider an alternative ending that would enable me to write a sequel. As much as I love these characters, I think I successfully told the whole story. But we shall see once the beta readers get hold of it.
  • I seem to find myself always saying the same two lines when describing certain character actions: (1) I have this weird affinity to explain how someone is laughing or crying, or (2) I have a constant need to say when someone sits or stands. It’s a bit funny, given it happens at least twice per chapter. I will definitely need to fix this during the editing stage. I don’t think anyone cares about those two actions that much!

 

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Summary of Father Figure (only read if you’re new to the book)

  • Amalia Graeme, sheltered and abused for most her life in Mississippi, longs to escape her difficult family and small hometown in 1984. When her older brother returns with his best friend, Amalia is tempted to have her first experience with a boy that summer. As they head off to college for her first year and his senior year, she begins to learn about life and love, battling her loss of innocence with the attraction she’s developed to an older professor. After she suffers a few personal tragedies, Amalia is forced to head back home, uncertain how to handle the permanent impacts on her life and future. No matter where she turns, someone or something always takes away her possibility of hope.
  • Brianna Porter is desperate to discover the purpose of her life, develop confidence in who she is, accept the consequences of who she has fallen in love with, and discover her father’s identity. Set twenty years in the future in New York City, there’s a connection between these two women’s stories that is about to be discovered. As Brianna stumbles upon her mother’s old journal, she learns a shocking secret about her father, rocked by a truth that could completely change the future. It may be too late to deal with the impacts of unleashing a history that was meant to stay buried for many reasons. When it leads to someone’s death, Brianna must come to terms with the choices she’s made and what is left of her own future.

 

About Me
I am a writer. I am have signed a contract for a publisher on my first book, Watching a Glass Shatter. To see more, please check out the website for this novel where you will find the first 3 chapters, character bios and sample quotes.

I am writing my second novel, Father Figure, with plans to finish and submit it to a publisher in November, 2017. As part of the process to engage with my fans and followers, I am publishing a weekly status on the progress of this second book. For a description of this book, check out the post where my friends and followers voted for this book as my second novel.

Beyond these two books, I have a number of short stories, poems and other novels in various shapes and forms. I also read A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, Tags, Awards, Age/Genre/Book Reads and Author Spotlights, as well as the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge.

You can also access my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.