Wednesday, October 17, 2012

On Writing OVERRIDE (#2 in Glitch Trilogy)

I finished the final, final readthrough of Override yesterday. All the tweaks are finished and the manuscript is back on its way to my publisher. There's this amazing feeling that comes with being TOTALLY finished with a book. At the stage where there are no more changes, no tweaks, no second-guessing. It's done. Finito. What I turned in is what will be printed.

Some authors get freaked out by this stage, but I'm mainly just excited. I'm excited because after all the ups and downs that were involved in writing and then rewriting and then, oh yeah, rewriting AGAIN, I finally have a book that I think is really good and that I'm proud of. I was getting giddy on my last read-through of it. If you thought book 1 was twisty and turny, I think I can confidently say you ain't seen nothing like what goes down in book 2 ;)

Part of the problem, among others, was the fact that it is so twisty. Note to self: never again have a character who can see the future. It will tie your plot up in knots that take a really long time to untangle and figure out!!!

And I cannot thank my amazing editor enough. She was encouraging and patient in spite of the really bad first draft (okay who are we kidding, and really bad second draft) I turned in. She didn't freak out over the fact that in the middle I wanted to trash it all and rewrite it from three alternating POVs (which, oh my gosh in hindsight I can see was a terrible idea, but when I was in the middle of it and trying to fix a broken book, seemed like a great one). She calmly and patiently read my furiously written chapters and then gently pointed out that this was not the best way for the book to go. She gave me ideas, questioned and prodded my plot throughout the next draft I turned in. She pushed me to smooth out the awkward or slow bits and to remember not to lose my characters. And all on a pretty insane timeline considering I only turned in the actually viable draft at the end of April!

Want to know the crazy timeline on this book?

  • June 2011: Turn in almost-finished 1st draft
  • August-December 2011: Rewrite major portions and turn in 2nd draft
  • February 2012: Realize that 2nd draft is total soulless crap, write 100 pgs from differing POV's to try to fix
  • March 2012: Fabulous editor helps me realize this is a really bad direction to take the book. Rethink plot and character problems.
  • April 2012: Start over from scratch. At first I thought I just needed to write a new first half of the book. And then I got to the second half, and realized it needed a total redo as well. Insane writing month commences, and the 3rd and finally solid draft is turned in by the end of the month.
  • ---Okay, this wasn't for Override, but it was still part of my crazy writing year. May 2012: Write most of book 3.
  • June-July 2012: Get edit letter and first line edits for Override. Do lots of rewrites and turn in again 6 weeks later.
  • August 2012: Book 1 releases! Yay! Get 2nd round of line edits for Override. Work feverishly on them and turn in 4 weeks later.
  • September 2012: Copyedits for Override.
  • October 2012: First Pass Pages for Override. And DONE! Soon arcs will release and my baby will be out in the world!
Phew! Just writing about it makes me feel tired. Standing on this end of it, I can't believe the insanity of this year. Reading through Override one last time over the past few days, I can't believe that it came together so well. But in the end, it really did. I think it's on par with Glitch and maybe is actually better.

And in the meantime, the fun never stops! On to edits for book 3!


  1. Congratulations on turning in your manuscript for book 2 and good luck with book 3 :-)

  2. So you're saying your lazy right? :)

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Thanks Petra! And lol, no joke, Libby ;)

  5. Congrats on finishing Override!!! I can't wait to read it and see the cover up close :D

  6. Congrats, Heather!! This sounds not unlike my experience with Book 2. Even though I still have the entirety of Book 3 ahead of me, I feel like I lost a thousand pounds the day I emailed the final version of Book 2 to my editor. Yay for dogged persistence!!

    1. For serious, Eve. Such an immense feeling of relief as I sent it in after FINALLY wrestling it into shape!