Cold morning out here in the real west (no surprise). I’m sad that one cup of coffee is (for good reasons, not the least of which the second doesn’t taste that good) the limit. That one cup is so good…
The chilly draft in my 90 year old house swirls around my wool-socked feet. I have two manuscripts on the table here, and one has been printed into a book. The best part of that is that I spelled the faux title of my own novel wrong. Never mind it’s the name of members of my own family. I’m an endless sense of amusement and frustration to myself.
The thing of printing a manuscript into a book is that it’s very helpful to me in the proofreading process. This isn’t a legit book in terms of formatting and other stuff, but it’s book-like.
It’s been edited professionally, something I wish I had been wise enough to do for Martin of Gfenn. Every subsequent book has had that advantage and it’s major. There’s also the thing (with a self-published book) that each time you need to deal with the manuscript you risk typos. At this point with Martin of Gfenn the typos are mostly spacing problems, still, who wants that?
In any case, yesterday when the book-like-thing arrived I thumbed through it and realized (for the first time) that I like the story. I saw what I have done — I have written a love story that’s not smarmy and predictable. I have created a complex female protagonist with integrity, passion, and genuine feelings. My male protagonist (antagonist?) never overcomes his flaws or sees them; he’s consistently himself and worthy of Aescylus or some guy like that.
When I started this book, I fought it all the way. I didn’t want to write about a woman, and there was nothing about the male hero that I liked.
One thing that happens when a person writes fiction is they soon discover that the people in the stories are not “their creations” at all but the emerge all on their own and demand to be themselves.
But they’re pretty loose about how you spell their names…