I’ve been busy lately on several improvement projects.
The first project involved releasing revised versions of the Young Hieronymus series; The Huntress, A Lesson in Power, and Amaranthine Dreams. I wanted to do this for a couple of reasons, 1) Since releasing those early stories I think I’ve become a better fiction writer, and 2) I wanted to use an editing tool, specifically ProWritingAid, as part of my process to improving my manuscripts.
I’m liking the results too.
If ProWritingAid doesn’t ring a bell, it’s an online service that accepts your manuscripts and using one or more analytical tools (your choice), shows you where your writing can use some improvement. You can run one or more tools like: Style, Grammar, Diction, Repeats, Transitions, Pronouns, etc. to isolate a specific weakness, or just run Combo to use all the tools.
ProWritingAid also includes a downloadable Java version that works with several popular writing apps including Scrivener, text, html, rtf, MS Word, markdown, and open document (odt) file formats. Using the Java app is much faster than using the online version as you don’t have to manually upload your files, run the tests, then download the results. With the app you just open the file on disk and start analyzing.
It’s not free, but $40 a year for Premium access to all these writing tools is reasonable.
So, for the last couple of weeks I’ve been revising the YH short stories. They’re now complete and being uploaded this week. I think they read and flow much better than the originals. Take a look and let me know what you think.
I’ve seen some nice improvements in my writing these last few weeks. I’ve noticed the number of common issues ProWritingAid pointed out are being reduced, sometimes by a significant amount. That tells me that I’ve started to resolve those errors in my writing before ProWritingAid can count them. My process is simple, write a scene to the best of my ability and then run it through ProWritingAid for revision. The result is a much stronger scene or chapter for the first draft.
The second project is Alexiandrölarn, my fantasy novella that comprises part 1 of The Forgotten Empire. I’m redoing Chapter 5 right now, finally know how it will end, and been having fun adding new twists and turns along the way.
Third project is Storms on an Opal Sea, the fourth incarnation is back on the table. Using the same process I’ve been rewriting SOS, chopping off scenes I didn’t need and hopefully writing a much better story after its long gestation. It was actually my 2nd short story idea, right after The Missing Wizard. The idea is old but now I may be able to complete it. Cross your fingers.
Also, a couple of other shorts in the process. They’re experimental and not likely to be released but who knows, I’m having fun again.
So, lots of activity, stay tuned for some new stories releases RSN.