Back to the Drawing Board (Sort of)

Yes, I know I stated a few months ago that writing on the long gestating The Condottiere was commencing. But the thing is, in the back of my head, I felt that Echoes of Truth was not quite ready to be in the query circuit. It wasn’t quite there. Feedback from beta readers and even my query pitch paragraphs were hitting on the same problem.

Part one of Echoes set up a false promise to readers.

There and Back and Gone Again

I know the blog has been more silent than usual this last month or so. I've been doing a lot of traveling. Two weeks back in the States was just enough time to get a houseful of stuff loaded onto a truck, drive it all back East, unload it, paint the storage shed, do some shopping, and then fly back to Ecuador.

After two weeks home, I'm off again on Thursday, but this time to London. My wife has two weeks of training there, so I'm going along to, um, carry her bags. :)

A Bit Premature?

I just figured out how many words I need to trim to get the manuscript down to 165,000 words, and I'm still four chapters away from finishing this version of the revision (which included both story, flow, and word count cuts).

Too soon? :)

This final draft will be only about cutting words and incorporating the thus far minor comments from my beta readers. With luck, I'll start this final draft next week.

(And the answer to "How much?" is cut 13% of the current manuscript, which amounts to about 24,000 words)

Getting It Done

I feel like my revisions have been an exercise in two steps forward and one step back. Especially in the area of word count. My goal was to shave about 35,000 words off this manuscript to get it down to a more realistic publishable length.

I've also realized that I needed a few chapters inserted to improve the pacing. Some I've known were needed for a long time and some became apparent during the re-read. The good news is I'm really pleased with my new chapters/sections. The bad news is they're eating away at my word cut progress!

Revision Update

Has it really been a month since I finished the first draft?

I’ve made good progress on my revisions, but not as much as I had hoped (the real story of my writing life, it seems.). I’ve imputed edits for eleven chapters and finished my complete rewrite of chapter one. The first two chapters got scrapped and redone from scratch with new scenes to better introduce the characters and plot. Chapter two is still coming along. It’s too much explanation of the plan right now. I need to add more conflict.

Recent News

May, 24 2016

Please, hold the door!

I'm both stunned and slightly embarrassed by all the attention this week, but welcome new visitors! Make yourself at home.

My thoughts behind my 2008 joke/prediction/guess can be found on my Blog.

Thanks again for stopping by!

About the Author

While reading The Fellowship of the Ring at the age of twelve, Stuart A. Etter was told by his teacher that he should be reading shorter books. Undaunted, he finished the trilogy and promptly moved on to other novels ranging from fantasy/sci-fi to historical fiction to horror to thrillers.

Featured Preview

Prologue: Prisoner Bound

Damion rubbed the dull ache of age from his hands. Countless years wielding a sword had conditioned his tendons and muscles, but time had worn them down, replacing strength with chronic pain. Closing his eyes, Damion dreamed of his youth. Battle and victory marked most of his memories, but darker images tainted his successes, reminding him of his one...