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Sunday, February 4, 2018

When the Villain Won't Cooperate @JacquieRogers #western #HeartsOfOwyhee #amwriting

Not "TheEnd." Yet.

Good News: Caroline Clemmons finished Daniel McClintock and I'm bouncy-happy that I'll finally get to read that book!  You can read about her new release in her last SGRR post, Typing the End of the Book!
Bad News: My next book, Much Ado About Mail-Order Brides (Hearts of Owyhee #6), which was supposed to release this week, is only half done.

I know, I know--it's killin' me! 

But sometimes stories pour onto the page and sometimes it takes a jackhammer.  This one's taking a jackhammer.  But first it ran over me with a steamroller.  Even bruised and battered, I'm rethinking and finally this book is revealing itself to me.  If there's one trait that a writer absolutely must have, it's tenacity. 

That's a nice word for stubbornness.

What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." 
Romeo and Juliette, Act II, Scene II

It all started when I realized that my villain's name didn't sound like a Manhattan dance teacher, so I found the perfect name for him.  But then that character absolutely refused to be a bad guy.  Maybe a medium bad guy, but not intentionally even at that. 

So then I needed a bad bad guy.  Really bad.  He barged in like nobody's business--he must've been waiting for his casting call all along.  This fellow is nasty baaad.  Perfect!

But...two villains?  That don't know each other?  Suddenly I have too many coincidences, and that's not good, either.

Ripple effect.

You'd think changing one character's name wouldn't be that big of a deal.  Just do a search and replace.  But it turns out that names are too powerful to be dealt with in such a flippant manner.  If they can be, then you have the wrong name for sure. 

The act of search and replace turns the ripple effect into a tsunami.

Now I have to go back through the entire first half of the book and find places where I can interject a little foreshadowing, plus both the bad guy and the bad bad guy need to have backstories and even more important--viable reasons for being in Silver City at the exact time the story is set, which is October, 1885.  This will affect at least six chapters and over a dozen scenes.  Some of them will have to be tossed and written anew.

I'm not a fan of rewriting.

But hey, I do feel great that I now know why writing the first half of this book has been a slog.  I feel energized!  My Muse has finally visited me, the story is unfolding, the characters are letting me in, and all that makes me a very happy gal.

So the book will be late, as will Honey Beaulieu #4, since I haven't even started on it yet.  Here it is, February 4, and I'm already two months behind on my publishing schedule.  LOL.  Maybe I should reassess, ya think?

Stay tuned for the new release announcement for Much Ado About Mail-Order Brides (Hearts of Owyhee #6) sometime in March--maybe even by my next schedule blog post!

Until then, happy reading and/or writing!

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  1. Isn't it awful when those darn characters just won't behave the way you want? *LOL* At least, you're on the right--if slightly longer--track now.

    1. There is that. The whole thing is frustrating, but in the end, the story will be better, and definitely more complex.

  2. Yes, when those characters dig in their heels and swear you won't get that story written when you've got them all wrong, there's just nothing you can do about it but cave in and write it the way they insist. I'm so glad they've finally convinced you so things can move forward again!

    1. Well, after I go back and redo all the bad guy parts, I can make some forward progress.

  3. I've read from other authors that sometimes the characters take off and run with the story on their own, I guess your bad guys are just a little bit shy getting started. LOL

    1. LOL. Yes, Bosco in Much Ado About Marshals wanted to be the star of the show. So did Fanny in Much Ado About Madams. Also in that book, Lucinda would NOT tell me her heart's desire. She'd let me get to the end of chapter 2 and the story would come to a screeching halt. But Honey Beaulieu came to the rescue. :)

  4. Jacquie, whenever the books come, they're always worth the wait! But, dang it, don't make us wait much longer. I'm already chompin' at the bit.


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