This post is going to be short and sweet. Conspire is finished! A few friends and family are now reading the final version, for which I am very grateful. I hope you enjoy it. I’ll be asking you to post reviews on this blog when you are finished.
To celebrate Conspire’s completion, I have put together a poster. Enjoy!
I am officially neglecting my blog readers. All five of you. This is for two reasons. The first is that my life seems to have spiralled into an insane period of crazy busy and I’m struggling to find time to do anything but work/eat/sleep. There’s a lot going on outside of work too. Enough with the excuses, I know. But I’ve also been trying to spend some of my limited spare time revising Conspire, and let me tell you, it is painful!
The feedback that my beta reader gave me seemed simple enough at first, but it’s uncovered a few issues within my plot that need to be addressed.
So here’s my question – when is a manuscript finished? Is it ever finished? I don’t know if mine ever will be. There’s always ways you can improve it. But when do you say ‘it’s done – now it’s ready to read’? Because if I don’t get a move on, the relevancy and freshness of my plot, which is very much based on current political and cultural events, will be lost. I don’t want to miss the boat of relevancy!
When you’re trying to write a book, and work full time, and have a social life, and reform your political party, and save the planet, and support your community groups and spend time with your loved ones, it all gets a bit much. Amazingly, I didn’t find this at all when I was writing the book. But finding time to sit down and revise it, and really analyse the plot, is really hard at the moment.
Anyway, I’m going to go back to it now. While neglecting my blog, at least I have a tiny bit more time to work on Conspire.
I promise it will be finished soon!
Happy days! My beta reader enjoyed Conspire. I was worried that he would hate it when I found out (after sending him the manuscript) that he is not just an avid reader and writer, but also a soldier in the American army, currently serving in Iraq. Geez! Talk about far off course from my target market! Considering the themes in Conspire, I actually thought I might offend him. But even if he was offended (and he didn’t say he was), he definitely enjoyed my story!
Below is Clark’s critique. I’ve removed sections that give away the plot. I am incredibly grateful for the feedback and I am now busily revising all the areas that Clark has pointed out as problematic.
I just finished reading your manuscript and you really do have a page turner here. I really did keep wanting to get back and read more and there was a temptation to read real fast in order to find out what would be happening next but I slowed down and took notes. I hope that this feed back will be effective for you. I will put it in two categories and you can choose to read them in whichever order you like (not sure if you like having positive or negative first).
- The story has very good pacing
- Your description of scenes was really well done
- The torture scene was so intense I felt a little sick. Very vivid, really put me there
- There is great drama and excitement in the story that makes you want to keep reading
- Alex is a very likable character who is easy to identify with
- the way you crafted giving information and holding back information was really well done. I could tell something was up but never could really put my finger on it
- Use of current technologies and political headlines gave it a very real feel
Parts that didn’t seem right:
- The very first of the book introduces a lot of characters and if I wasn’t writing them down I’d have had a hard time keeping track
- The body contact (holding hands, holding etc.) of Henry and Alex seems out of place. (I removed a section here)
- When (removed) is picked up at the airport I wish I had cared more about him. (Removed) come off a little flat especially compared to how well the characters of (removed) have been developed. I really didn’t care about what happened to any of them.
- Henry sometimes confuses me and maybe that’s because (removed…)
- Ahmed’s plan with (removed) really didn’t make sense when (removed…).
As a personal note I really liked the (removed) but I didn’t care for the (removed) .
I really do appreciate the opportunity to have read Conspire and I’m hoping to say “I read that book before it was number one on the New York bestsellers list”
Best wishes as you move forward to the next step,