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!

Adjusting the Flow

I’m hip deep in editing/revising part three and I found a new challenge: story flow.

To paraphrase Frank Herbert (bastardize really), the story must flow.

No, I haven’t just discovered that magical pace where the story clips along (or doesn’t), but this is the first time the Point of View characters are not all in the same place.

Strange Sightings at a Traffic Light

I’ve been living in Ecuador for over a year now. Every once in a while, I think about adding a regular feature to this blog about my observations of living overseas. I haven’t mostly because I don’t want to offend any of my in-laws by remarking on something strange from an American’s point of view that might be just fine from theirs. Keep in mind that this isn’t the first time I’ve lived in another country. I spent six months living in Northern Italy after high school and my junior year abroad in Finland. Add that to all of the other travel I’ve done and the long visits to visit my wife’s family down here, and I consider myself very well traveled.

Well, today, I saw something even my wife has never seen before, so I figured I’d share.

The Hate Stage of Love

I’m at the stage of my revision where I hate my book. No, that’s not true. I hated it months ago. But then I read a part that makes me smile or a section that I had forgotten, and all the banging my head on my keyboard is suddenly worth it.

In my daily quest to procrastinate from picking apart yet another scene to find places to cut, I got caught up reading Patrick Rothfuss’ blog.

His post last fall titled Everyone Hates Their Job Sometimes really hit home with me today.

Now, if I could only make this a paying gig, I could call this an actual job…

Value of a Good Critique Group

I may have blogged about this in the past, but as I’m poring over comments I’ve gathered from my critique over the years, I’m reminded how crucial a good critique group is to making a novel a success.

What is a good critique group?

Let me first describe what I consider a poor critique group: a gathering of people who want to write but are more interested in building themselves up than helping the others. Even one selfish member can poison the entire group.


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.

For those curious about my writing, the prologue of my first novel is posted in the Samples section. Like what you read? Drop me a message through the contact form!

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.

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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...