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Tuesday, October 2, 2018

BIRTHING A BOOK


By Caroline Clemmons

Birthing a book baby isn’t as messy as birthing a human baby, but it’s often a long, painful process. Some books I’ve written are a joy because the characters dutifully follow my outline. For instance, O'NEILL'S TEXAS BRIDE required extensive research on coal mines in Texas and elsewhere, but then I was able to write that book without gnashing of teeth and finish it on my self-imposed deadline. But, that book was for my McClintock Series, and I only had to keep my previous McClintock characters in my head.   



My latest release, BLESSING, was not like that. I love the book, love the cover, loved working with the other authors in The Widows of Wildcat Ridge series. This book also touched on mining, but this was gold instead of coal and Utah instead of Texas. Being in a multi-author series consumes extra time because nothing in one of the books can contradict any other book. This might not sound difficult but, trust me, it is. Fortunately, the other authors in this series are congenial and we haven't had conflict. In fact, it appears to me that each of them makes an effort to work for the good of the series. I'm pleased to be associated with them.

Whether writing a stand-alone or part of a series, authors spend time researching details, planning the setting, and giving the characters traits and descriptions before the actual writing begins. You can see that whether we are extensive plotters or write by the seat of our pants (pantsers), we have put in a lot of work before the writing gets underway. I’m in the middle between extensive plotter and a pantser—making me a Plotser. LOL

Authors like Reina Torres are clever enough to design their own covers. Not I—I have someone else design mine. I tried doing my own but they looked pretty much like a first-grade student had done them.  I recently did a poll on my readers’ group, Caroline’s Cuties. Covers are important to some readers while others don’t pay much attention to the actual cover as long as it’s not offensive. I want the cover to represent something in the book.

Writing is different for every author. One of my friends takes a year to write one book while another author friend writes several books each month. I try for one short book a month but have failed to produce on that schedule this year. Life keeps interrupting. 

After the writing comes editing. I edit before I send my book to my editors. When the editors return the book to me, I edit again because they always have corrections and suggestions. After the editing process comes the formatting, which my husband does for me then uploads the book to Amazon and any other vendors we’re using. This saves me time and expense. 

 Next comes the release, which was yesterday for BLESSING. We had a party at Caroline’s Cuties and The Widows of Wildcat Ridge readers’ groups on Facebook. Keeping up with both groups at the same time was intense but fun. I had a lovely launch day.

Thanks for stopping by.

1 comment:

  1. I missed your parties! Boohoo. Then again, I haven't been keeping up with anything lately. I'm looking forward to reading BLESSING. Whether the book rolls out of your brain onto the page, or whether it's hard-fought, they all read as if you were sitting there talking to me. Your books are fabulous and I love all your stories.

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