Editing... Oofda but with Witches and Pirates
The bane of existence is editing for most writers. Honestly, I kinda like editing if on my own timeline, but nowadays, I'm trying to pump out the editing to get it done with and get it going somewhere else.
In this case, my currently called "Witches of the Waves" has finished editing on my end. For now. (Also, life of a writer because the editing never stops.) The book was previously called "Witchy Pirates" as a placeholder, and I don't know if "Witches of the Waves" will be the final name of the book. (As you might guess from these names, there are witches and pirates, and they are doing some witchy pirate stuff.) (I have been told that I write horrible synopsizes, and that basically proves it.)
Tonight, I finished editing the manuscript for the last time before I send it off to a professional-- and paid (sorry, bank account)-- editor. I'll be meeting with them in September and expect that full editing will be done in December 2022. At that point, then I'll do additional editing. (Yay.)
If you've read my "Castle of Skulls" series, then you may or may not have noticed that I didn't pay someone to edit it. That's all on me. I had my friend Giorgi read the first two books, but she wasn't on the look out for editing things. I like to think I'm not too bad of an editor. While I know this blog posting will be a bit bad, I'm actually quite good with grammar and stuff. I make my money on it with my day job (marketing for a water treatment company). There are errors in the "Castle of Skulls" series, I know that there is, but most commas should be in place, etc.
When it comes to "Witches of the Waves," I'm not concerned about the grammar. (I have been called a "grammar nazi" by multiple people, even if I don't agree with the term.) I'm more concerned about the structure of the story, pacing, plot points, sub plot, etc. I didn't plot, and even the best plotters will have issues. While I've slowly been getting more into plotting, this book (and many of my other books) were written by "flying by the seat of my pants." (Authors who do this will sometimes lovingly-- and begrudgingly-- be called "pantsers.")
Because I didn't plot (the story started with a dream, damnit!), I've definitely had to rewrite the beginning and ending multiple times. With the beginning of the book, I never know where to start, and ultimately, as a writer, you don't always know where to begin. As for the ending, that has been changing as the plot and characters change within the book. Even tonight, as I finished editing this version of "Witches of the Waves," I rewrote the ending. I had been thinking of a new ending for a month and hadn't come up with anything that fit. I don't know if this ending will fit or if this is the perfect ending, but based on what I have, then we shall see. Also, with hiring a professional editor, they can hopefully help me out.
The reason why I'm choosing to use a professional editor for "Witches of the Waves" is because I'm hoping to have this book picked up by literary agents and potentially be traditionally published. My "Castle of Skulls" series is self-published, and while I tried to the traditional route of publishing with those books, I wanted the books to be out in the world, hit my dream of being a published author by the age of 25, and knew that the "Castle of Skulls" series isn't for everyone. I have more confidence with "Witches of the Waves," which is more popular fiction.
Fine, quick rundown of "Witches of the Waves" via keywords: witches, pirates, adventure, action, romance, young adult/ new adult (YA/NA), warm climates, family, LBGTQIA+, magic, historical, fantasy, fiction, fairytale retelling(s).
With "Witches of the Waves," I will be trying to traditional route, but I don't know how it will go. I'm taking the gamble. I'll give it a year to be picked up, and if it doesn't go well, then I will be doing the self-publishing all over again.
However, don't think that I'm slacking. "Witches of the Waves" may be going to a professional editor, I will be back at editing for self-publishing with my book "Beneath the Surface," which is to be self-published in September 2023. (Gosh, that feels like forever but also not.)
"Beneath the Waves" is a spinoff series of the "Castle of Skulls," taking place in Lake Superior with the mermaids who inhabit it and the mortals on shore. I'm very excited to start reworking on the series, but I know that it will be a journey. It's been a couple of years since I worked on the series, and for a duology, both of the books are large. (Much, much, much longer than they need to be.) I do enjoy editing, but the work is never over.