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Saturday, November 13, 2010

Why Editors Rock

Hello Fellow Writers!
So we're on day 13 of NaNoWriMo. I've got 28K words of my post-apocalyptic erotic romance Protecting Emily - my goal is 80K. I've got a *lot* of writing to do!

Today I went to the monthly Hudson Valley chapter of RWA meeting. It was great seeing everyone I usually only see online, and we had a guest speaker - Trish Owens from Wild Rose Press. She seemed to know her stuff, and since I've read a book she edited (Taryn Kincaid's Sleepy Hollow Dreams) I felt comfortable asking her if she'd be interested in having me send her a short story (10K words). Yes, she is, so I'll be polishing and sending it off to her soon.

One of my fellow Ellora's Cave authors, Christie Butler, just had her first book come out! It's called Look at Me. Of course, I emailed Christie to ask her some questions!

Shoshanna: Are you doing NaNoWriMo this year? I'm doing it for the second year in a row and it's all I can think about lately...

Christie: This publishing business is new to me, so I have to confess I didn't know what NaNoWriMo was. So, no, I'm not doing it. After looking it up, it seems like a fun thing to do. Unfortunately, I also have a full time job and the cutest, most lovable dog in the world who demands a lot of my spare time! I think it would be tough to do, writing a 50,000 word novel in thirty days. I applaud all those authors who are able to do it. Maybe someday, if I can make enough money writing so I can quit my day job, I'll give it a shot.

Shoshanna: So you sold your first book - but the work doesn't end there, as you know. How was the editing process for you?

Christie: The editing process was fairly painless, much thanks to (my Ellora's Cave editor) Jilly. She gave me some things to think about, tips on how to make the story more logical and consistent. I was able to use her comments and make some minimal changes to benefit the story and make it better. Jilly also helped me with my main character, making suggestions that I initially resisted, but I came to see the wisdom in her words! Overall, I enjoyed the process and saw it as just another step in getting my story out there, but new and improved.

Shoshanna: Oh, Jilly will be glad to hear that! I feel the same way - I'm happy to do whatever it takes to make the story the best it can be. So, here's another question for ya. How do you combat writer's block?

Christie: When I get writer's block, my first tactic is to pour a glass of wine! Often that will help my mind expand. When that doesn't inspire me, I just put it away, close up the laptop and do something else. Sometimes I'll get an idea of how to move forward form something I hear someone say at work, or on television, or read online. Because I work during the day, I do my writing at night. When I get stuck, it stays with me and often I'll find myself in bed trying to fall asleep, but thinking about my predicament. And then it will come to me. I've gotten some of my best ideas in those few minutes at night just before I fall asleep. I just need to remember them when I wake up in the morning.

Shoshanna: I keep a notepad and pen at my bedside for just that reason, lol! Thanks for being on The Writer's Challenge, Christie, and good luck with your new book, Look at Me.

Read an adults only excerpt of Christie Butler's new book here.


  1. Nothing like an editor to put things into focus. I like the view of a new party, someone who hasn't been there from the first chapter. They see things in a different way than the crit partner might.

  2. Nice interview. Editors are very helpful for they see what we do not and sometimes prevent having a reader scratch their heads. This just happened to me the other day. A single word change made all the difference. Keep those nano words coming. Finally got my six sentences up.

  3. I'm with you Christie on the wisdom of Jilly's words :-)

  4. Hey, thanks for the shout out!

    Trish loved meeting everyone and is looking forward to submissions!

  5. A good editor is worth his/her weight in gold. I've been fortunate to have some very insightful editors who really made a huge difference in the quality of a story. Congrats on your first book with EC. May it go out and find you a ton of new readers.

  6. Hi Christie, another EC author here. Congratulations on your first release! Some of what you had to say here today reminds me of me, and probably a lot of other authors. I also work days and write nights:)



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