As I near the completion of my new novel, The Revenger, I’m thinking ahead to the polishing and refining process which makes me aware of some glitches encountered in writing a full-length book. I thought it might be interesting to share some of my thoughts with you.

First the easy one. Sometimes in a book when I get on a roll so to speak, and am writing as fast as I can type on the keyboard. This can occur during a dialogue-filled scene where the character’s words just tumble out of me with little conscious direction. It can occur also when “painting” a scene that is especially vivid in my imagination. Upon review, I discover I will often use a phrase that I like and then, without thinking, repeat it once or more in subsequent paragraphs. When rereading the text, these phrases stand out. Even though the word or words fit each subsequent use, they are too closely spaced and would jar the reader (as it does me when I review the manuscript). That’s where the online thesaurus comes in. It’s quite handy; the English language is filled with wonderful subtle variations of words or phrases that add slightly different nuances or feel to the meaning of a text. Often, I can find an even better phrase which gives more insight or color to the meaning than just repeating the one that I first used.

Sometimes the storyline or plot gets lost in a mist. I know where I want to be but am not sure how to get there. To overcome that, I sometimes will just write the next strong action scene that I know is coming and later will work to write the connection to it.

There are times when I am just putting down the structure of the plot. When I review the story, these sections require me to fill in the picture, like painting in a coloring book drawing or fleshing out a skeleton of text. This process usually adds to the word count, so I often have to find places to trim. The result of this “coloring in” and trimming is a better reading experience for everyone. The process is not without its frustrations, but also very enjoyable. Like polishing an object until it becomes something beautiful. In this case beauty being an entertaining and engrossing read.

All of this work starts very soon. I’m looking forward to it after I write those two magical words, “The End”.

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