Reading, Writing, and Editing

Hope you noticed the Oxford comma in the title. I am a believer in the power of the properly placed comma. I’ve been a contract editor for Dreamspinner Press for almost 7 years now, and it’s been a learning experience. I really love doing it. Helping another writer polish their work might be my true calling. I do wish more people understood the difference between an editor and a proofreader, but that is well beyond my control. Needless to say–it’s not the same thing.

It’s made me a better writer too. Made me very much aware of my own bad habits like repetition and making too many assumptions that my reader knows what the hell I’m talking about. I can blame part of that on my being a research junkie. When I find something that interests me, I dig in. I watch all the documentaries. I read online. I read books. Hell, when I was writing Dead Man’s Hand, I went to the San Diego Maritime Museum to tour the Berkeley, which is the ferry Denver takes from San Francisco to Oakland after the Great San Francisco Earthquake.

But all that editing has made me a much slower and more critical reader. I used to be able to blast through a book a day, which also might be due to all the distractions of our age of technology, but I do think a lot of it is I’m unconsciously picking apart what I’m reading and don’t want to. I really want to just read a book. Slip into someone else’s world and escape, but instead I’m filling my head with what-ifs and how could this have been done better?

 

Inserting the villain

I debated whether or not to add villain chapters to the Prenup from Hell for a long time. Some people don’t like them, but then some people don’t like flashbacks either and I LOVE those. (I blame Highlander for that addiction.) I also happen to love writing bad guys. It’s fun to take a walk on the dark side.

I’m at a good point in Prenup where I could easily (yeah right) insert a chapter with the villain. I know the motivation. I know they hold the key to solving the entire problem that my characters are going through–not that I’m going to give that away in chapter nine–but it feels right to bring them into play.

It’s not as if I’m writing first person where you don’t get to see the villain from any perspective than the ‘hero’. Hopefully my readers find the villain to be an interesting character.

Jenn Moffatt & Lee Jay Stura

So here’s the real reason I was going with Lee Jay Stura, my one and only book on Amazon was published with that name on it, and I did not want the 10 people who bought it to be confused. I also intend to use Denver in future books, because I have a whole slew of vampires with stories to tell.

But I’ve since decided to not do the new books in 1st person like Dead Man’s Hand¬†and since I want to be able to put the boys in each others’ books that means third person is necessary.

This will mean a cover update for Dead Man’s Hand at some point to say, “Jenn Moffatt writing as Lee Jay Stura” or something else pretentious. LOL

I’ve secured jennmoffattwrites and have leejaysturawrites. Next month I’ll work on making a viable website and up my social media use. Right now I need to sort out chapter 8 of the Prenup From Hell for next Monday’s Patreon.