I've finished editing the next book!
Well, I've finished my editing. The next stage is to send it to Joffe Books and hope they like it enough to publish it! If they do, it will then go to their editor who will undoubtedly have some more changes to suggest.
I can't lie to you; it's been a bit of a slog. This book follows on from The Call (originally The Wrong Kind of Clouds). It's a more standard police procedural than The Call was, but it features Detective Sergeant LB Stewart and Summer Morris again.
I originally started writing it, way back in 2013. 2013!! I then abandoned it, because I just wasn't sure about it all. At that stage it was about 45,000 words long. Having abandoned it, I then wrote three more books - the psychological thriller Lies That Poison, and the first two books in an urban fantasy trilogy.
Fast-forward on to 2017 and I got my publishing deal with Joffe Books, for The Call, Lies That Poison, and any book that featured the same characters from either of them. Lies That Poison is a stand-alone novel, but I did have 45,000 words of a book featuring LB Stewart and Summer Morris. Should I go back to it and see if I could finish it?
I dusted off the notebooks and had a re-read. Almost immediately, I cut about 10,000 words and was monumentally depressed by the whole idea of working on it. Instead, I went on holiday. I came back to edits for Lies That Poison and worked on those instead. Those done, I took another look at the book and re-worked the plot and some of the characters. Finally, it started to slot into place.
By the end of December/the start of January, I was struggling with momentum, but got out the sand-timers and kept my ass in the chair (metaphorically, as I stand to write!). With the support of some very good friends encouraging me to believe in myself, by the end of January, I'd finished the first draft. And created The Giant Spreadsheet of Editing, ready to tackle the structural edit.
"Throw Away Your Crutches and tighten it all up" edit. Highlighting all my over-used words in the Word document was a real heart-sink moment, but they needed tackling!
After that was the "Spit and Polish" edit - trying to make it sparkle. That's always my favourite stage of editing. Now that's done, it will go off to Joffe Books.
Fingers crossed... I'm hoping it will be published by the end of summer!