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So, what's been happening with the revisions? They're done, right?

Well, yes and no. The run-through of the revisions are done, yes. I've been through the entire book and changed everything that was on my list. But some of the things on that list weren't necessarily that specific of a change. Remember the multiple levels of changes. The bottom-level of changes were easy to fix, since they were things like "mention a knife in chapter 12, need to set the knife up in chapter 5." So you go back to chapter 5 and add in a sentence or two about the knife and walla! you're done. The mid-level revisions are less specific, but still easy to cross off the list. These were things like "add in a few scenes from Garius' POV after the meeting to get across the politics of his race." So you find a spot after the meeting where you can squeeze in a few scenes without interrupting the flow. But notice that "add in a few" part. There's some wiggle room there. How many scenes are necessary? How many do you need to get the point across? And Garius is a new POV character in this revisions as well, so you have to spend some time developing his character and backstory a little while you're explaining the politics of his race in those scenes. (Remember, every scene needs to do two or more things.) And then the top-level stuff, like "add in more about the Andovan culture!" Vague. How much do you add? How much is enough? Have you pushed the line and added too much? Did you info-dump? When can you safely cross this off the revision list?

As you can see, in the mid-level and top-level stuff, there's some leeway as to whether or not you're "done" and can cross things off the list. So what I've been doing the last few days is NOT actively working on the revisions, but actively THINKING about the revisions and asking myself, "Is what I did to fix this enough? Too much?" And overall, I think what I did was fine. You can drive yourself crazy thinking about this, so at some point you have to just say, done. There's only one thing that I think I need to "fix" before I do the official print out and send this back to DAW and my editor, and it has to do with Garius and his POV scenes that I added. Like I said, he's a new POV character in the book, so I can't just add the scene that tells of the political situation for his race. I need to develop his backstory a little bit, give him a life, give him motivation, basically make him a full-fledged character, even if I only have a few scene to do that. I did that during the revisions (he has a warrior son who's angry because of the death of his brothers, while Garius' wife just wants the fighting to end because she's already lost three sons to the war, and doesn't want to lose Garius or her other son, etc). I also added in alot more about the culture of Garius' race, to worldbuild, all in two scenes. BUT . . . I think I need to add one more scene, toward the end of the book, from Garius' POV. Basically, the role of this scene is to wrap up Garius' storyline a little bit. I made him a character, I gave him a storyline, and that storyline needs to have a conclusion of some sort.

Today, I will go back to the end of the novel and find a good spot to insert a scene from Garius' POV where I can finish off his story and that of his race. At least for this book.

In addition, I'm going to start revising (and hopefully finish revising) a short story called "Mastihooba" for that anthology I was invited to participate in. So revisions continue today!

But you probably don't care about that. You want to know about the contest!!! So here we go:

The winner for Sunday is [livejournal.com profile] shartyrant! Congrats! Get in touch with me here on LJ in a message or email me at jpalmatier@sff.net with the address I should mail the book to and a name if you want me to personalize it. Otherwise I'll just send a signed copy.

For everyone else, there's still 8 days left! I will be giving away a first edition signed hardcover of The Skewed Throne, one per day, for the next eight days. The drawing will be done at random based on the comments received on that day's LJ entry. So if you enter today, you're in the drawing for today only; you have to come back tomorrow and enter again for a chance to win in the drawing tomorrow; then come back again for the next day, etc. You have to comment on that day's LJ post to enter for that day, so if you stop on by and I haven't had a chance to put up the post for that day yet, you'll have to come back when it's up to enter. You can enter as many days out of the 10 as you wish, even if you win on one of the days (if you win multiple copies, or already have a copy of the book, I assume you have some friends you can give the book to, or perhaps you can donate it to your local library, etc).

This contest is to celebrate finishing the revisions of the new book Well of Sorrows, coming out in May 2010 in trade paperback, AND to celebrate the release of Die Assassine, the German version of The Skewed Throne, which will hit the shelves on August 11th in Germany. Here's the incredible cover:





So if you're in Germany or can read German, RUSH--I say again RUSH--out and buy Die Assassine! Once it's out of course. (It is available for preorder on the German Amazon.com, along with book 2, "Die Regentin," to be released in January 2010.) And please, please tell all of your friends about it, since it's going to be impossible for me to do many signings and other stuff to promote it in Germany. Especially since I can't speak or read German very well.

And there you go! Enter the contest (just comment!) every day for the next 8 days, and buy my German book!

That is all. Carry on.
(deleted comment)

Date: 2009-08-04 12:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Revisions aren't that bad, actually. There's enough time between when you finish the book and when your editor gets back to you that rereading the entire novel again is a new experience.

Date: 2009-08-03 01:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] cat-mcdougall.livejournal.com
I cannot read German. Umm... yet.

I'll work on that! :D

(Obligatory comment for contesty goodness.)

Date: 2009-08-04 12:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
I had a few years of German in college, but learning foreign languages are just not my thing.

Date: 2009-08-03 01:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] comradecharlie.livejournal.com
Perhaps today is my lucky day, since it's mum's birthday. So here's my comment to enter the draw.

Date: 2009-08-04 12:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Umm . . . not that lucky. Try again today!

Date: 2009-08-03 01:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gillpolack.livejournal.com
I had to do almost the exact same set of revisions for a character of mine. The trick for me was not to give him too much extra space, because that would make him a major character and I have reasons (all the wrong reasons, but still, reasons) for wanting to keep him subsidiary. I gave him 3-4 tiny scenes instead of one larger one, though, so we found different solutions.

Date: 2009-08-04 12:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Yeah, I was trying to back off and not give Garius that many scenes (the book's long already) but after alot of thought he needed a "final" scene to tie his storyline up. Sort of. I think he got 3 scenes in the entire novel.

Date: 2009-08-03 01:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wood-dragon.livejournal.com
Good luck on the revisions and the short story!

Date: 2009-08-04 12:03 pm (UTC)

Date: 2009-08-03 02:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mtlawson.livejournal.com
Okay, the level of revisions actually has me wondering how much of an impact an editor has on a completed novel. I remember hearing somewhere (probably a Dragon Page podcast) about how some editors get so involved they are practically a co-author on a novel. Others, not so much.

Date: 2009-08-04 12:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
The editor has quite a bit of impact on the final novel. My editor does not get as involved as that podcast suggests though. We basically have a long phone conversation about the book, and then I sit down and decide what part of those suggestions I agree with, and then start making the changes. She generally just present options or tells me what the problem is and has me try to figure out what to do about it. So definitely not the "co-author" novel.

Date: 2009-08-03 02:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] hiddleasaurus.livejournal.com
Oh, hi. Commenting again. :)

Date: 2009-08-04 12:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Hey. Try again!

Date: 2009-08-03 03:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] inspirethoughts.livejournal.com
Finally I got to comment in time! :)

Date: 2009-08-04 12:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Yes, you did! But you didn't win for that day, so try again!

Date: 2009-08-03 03:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vespican.livejournal.com
While I have all three "Throne" books in paperback, I wouldn't mind a hard cover version of THE SKEWED THRONE. A signed copy would surely make a great door prize at a Spokane Authors and Self-Publishers meeting!
Dave

Date: 2009-08-04 12:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
And you won! Get in touch with me here with a message, or at jpalmatier@sff.net with your address and I'll get that sent out. If you'd like it signed to you or someone else, let me know, otherwise I'll just send you a signed copy.

Date: 2009-08-03 04:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] trektone.livejournal.com
Yay for short stories!

Date: 2009-08-04 12:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
I don't typically write them, but have a few ideas swimming around in my head, so I've been trying to get more of them written and published lately.

Date: 2009-08-03 04:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sera-bella.livejournal.com
Revisions are a scary part of writing. I think that's probably why I'll never be an author.

Date: 2009-08-04 12:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
The revisions aren't that bad. I never freak about them anyway. The worst part of the writing process for me is the middle of the novel, when I'm not sure whether everything is going to gel and work right or not. At the beginning I'm all excited, and at the end I'm euphoric and relieved. In the middle . . .

Date: 2009-08-03 04:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] handworn.livejournal.com
I wonder what the Germans are like in terms of F&SF preferences.

Date: 2009-08-03 05:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wortschmiedin.livejournal.com
there is a certain snobbiness here regarding SF and Fantasy (and yes they mostly are still simply stuck together in one section, which is why most readers of said genres either get their books online - like I do especially since I preferr reading the english versions, translations earn roughly 12 $ per page over here) it is thought by the mainstream to be mostly young adult novels. Even the professor written SF doesn't cut it. BUt the market for decent fantasy novels is as huge as anywhere. cultural developments (liek reading habits, fashion etc) tend to hit us roughly 5 to 10 years later than the US. But aside from the fact that sex over here is not so much a taboo (the reason why the Austin Powers movies don't get anywhere here) and that some other issues and references might not take (the reason why Toy story here didn't work) we are pretty much the same as in teh US, just a bit more snobby ;) for no good reason. BUt if a book gets published here it will have run through any number of local decisionmakers and rarely fail on that basis, it may fail if the translations sucks, but frankly I have read some atrociously translated books that still made it doe to the strong plot. It is mostly a factor of marketing. As I said. I will do what little I can ;) like giving it as a present ;)

Date: 2009-08-04 12:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
They seem to be fairly interested in it. From what I've heard from other authors, one of the first foreign language rights sales is typically German, and then other foreign languages follow up after that. I've heard that the readership there is fairly robust as well.

Date: 2009-08-04 12:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wortschmiedin.livejournal.com
Actually I think that sf&F combined is one of the bigger markets, after romance that is ;)

Date: 2009-08-03 05:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mgsmurf.livejournal.com
Again, I like hearing about your take on revisions. Sure, it's something that my novels will always need as well, and your categories may be something I think about later. Writing and revision work better for me if I can find a logic behind it (the lack of logic is why grammar didn't work for me for so long).

Date: 2009-08-04 12:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Well, a good editor will give you the logic behind why they think something isn't working and why the suggested fix might work.

Date: 2009-08-03 05:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wortschmiedin.livejournal.com
Hehe I just preordered it :) at AMAZON for my nephew, but I will go and if necessary Order it at my comic/fantasy book store just to get it onto their radar (assuming the skewerd throne isn't yet, they have a fast english section and the yknow their stuff well)

Date: 2009-08-04 12:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Thanks! And thanks for anything and everything that you can do to get people to notice it. Hopefully they've already heard of me through the English versions, but if not, perhaps they'll notice the German cover. *grin*

Date: 2009-08-04 12:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wortschmiedin.livejournal.com
It seems to be a new development that they actually are making Decent german covers, it used to be buying old covers, and they did not even match the general storyline lately they have been cropping the covers out of very old paintings, so they didn't need to pay an artist at all.

Date: 2009-08-03 06:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] beckyh2112.livejournal.com
/comments!

Date: 2009-08-04 12:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Try again today!

Date: 2009-08-03 06:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greenmtnboy18.livejournal.com
Day three! And that is a very cool German cover. Sadly I don't read German.

Date: 2009-08-04 12:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Neither do I. But I ordered some copies anyway. *grin*

Date: 2009-08-03 07:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] unpissenlit.livejournal.com
Revisions sound...complicated...

Congrats on the release of Die Assassine and finishing the revisions for Well of Sorrows!

Date: 2009-08-03 07:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mtlawson.livejournal.com
Wow, I love that icon.

Date: 2009-08-04 12:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
They aren't really all that bad. It probably seems like they're complicated because I'm updating everyone on a nearly daily basis and talking about them alot, but really it's just LONG. It takes weeks to go through an entire novel and make such small yet significant changes.

Date: 2009-08-03 08:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] amguynes.livejournal.com
I still need something new to read. I've reread every single book in my house, and my library doesn't like me since my kids destroyed one of the books in the kids' section.......while we were still IN the library. *cringe* We're waiting for my husband's living expenses from school to pay for that and the two books we have NO idea of where they went.

So...new reading material please? LOL

(BTW, thank you for running these contests. They're actually fun, and reading your journal entries just makes it even more enjoyable.)

Date: 2009-08-04 12:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
I tried but the random number generator picked someone else for this day. Try again. (And you might want to bribe the random number generator.)

Date: 2009-08-04 01:35 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elfwench.livejournal.com
*waves* It's been a Monday.

That is all.

Date: 2009-08-04 12:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jpsorrow.livejournal.com
Hopefully Tuesday will be better . . . but you'll have to try again on the contest.

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Joshua Palmatier

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