Today, I have author Carolyn Crane here with us sharing 5 pleasure-killing beasts she’s constantly evicting from manuscripts.
Welcome to The Book Vixen Carolyn!
Hey, Vixens! Thanks so much for having me here! I’m talking today about pleasure-killing manuscript beasts. Oh, you sneaky things, creeping into my works in progress, hiding, lurking trying to steal into final drafts. Nooo! Here are a few of my most unfavorite ones:
The ultra-boring connective scene
This is the connective scene where nothing really happens, but the characters must get from A to B, or some info must be delivered. It’s easy to gloss over these scenes on the way to the fireworks, telling myself they must be there. The truth is, scenes like this are bor-ing. It’s a form of writer’s denial, I guess, glossing over these. At least for me. Eventually I face the facts: something must be done. Sometimes I find a way to condense the ultra-boring connective scene or folding it in with something else. But a lot of times, if I put enough pressure on such a scene, I can get something good. Character depth. New surprises. One of my favorite scenes in Double Cross, the Marty interrogation, was a boring connective scene that I focused on really intensely and now it one of my faves ever.
The seemingly important sentence that mysteriously doesn’t work
This is the sentence that just doesn’t work no matter how much I switch it around and revise it. It fools me, because it seems like it belongs. But then, after fruitlessly slaving away to make it work, eventually I get the bright idea to delete it, and wow! The whole passage is better. It didn’t work because it should be there. *forehead slap* You would think I’d be able to recognize these now, but no. Apparently I have to go through the process every time.
The way-too-obvious planted information
I love planting stuff to pop later, but readers, you are so smart about sniffing it out! Really, I think it’s more fun when the reader doesn’t recognize planted info. But it’s a constant battle. I have this trick to defeat this one where I make the plant seem like it’s vital for something in the immediate scene. In Mr. Real, I wanted my heroine to have a condom in her pocket for a sex scene later, because who wants their characters to chase all over for condoms when they want to have sex? But, how obvious to have the heroine be like, oh, look, a condom is in the pocket of these pants I just put on. So, I made this big deal of it that she finds it, and it becomes this symbol in her mind of how slutty she’d been, always having a condom in case she wanted to sleep with strangers, and how much she wants to change and has been changing. So, the reader thinks that’s why it’s there. Hah!
The writerly flourish
This is the most embarrassing one to find. It’s the ooooh-me-and-my-golden-pen, we-will-weave-magic sentence. A lot of times, for me, it will be a description. Omg, I hate finding these. It’s easy in a first draft, at least for me, to play and mess around, and put in something outrageously writerly, kind of trying it out, thinking it’s a fresh way of bringing something to life. But later, I have to really think, is this really best for the reader? Or is it best for the writer? And then I evict that sucker!
This one is hard. I always have fave words of the moment. Lately I’ve been loving whispers and wild looks. I think you can have multiple whispers in a manuscript, but not multiple wild looks. Or the word generous in conjunction with descriptions, e.g. generous lips. I may be too in love with ragged breath, too. Must….evict.
Hey, thanks so much for having me!
Look, a contest! I’m giving away a Mr. Real ebook. Leave a comment naming your most favorite or least favorite word to read or use in a book.
Carolyn Crane is the author of the Disillusionists trilogy and assorted novellas. She lives in Minneapolis with her husband and two cats, and works a day job as a freelance writer. During rare moments when she’s not at her computer, she can be found reading in bed, running, or helping animals.
The woman of his dreams…with the secret agent of his nightmares
Alix Gordon is a woman who doesn’t take life too seriously. What’s the fun in that? So when she stumbles across occult software that can bring any computer image to life, she conjures up lots of awesome outfits and accessories. And then, on one drunken, horny night, she conjures up Sir Kendall, the sexy TV ad spy . . . who looks exactly like Paul Reinhardt, the hot martial arts teacher who kicked her out of class a few years ago.
Fighter Paul Reinhardt has good reason to hate Sir Kendall, the character he brought to life to land a part in a TV ad; he’d do anything to forget him. A cross country road trip seems just the thing . . . until Paul finds himself inexplicably drawn to Minnesota and is shocked to discover Sir Kendall – in the flesh – with the girl he’d once loved from afar. He barges into Alix and Sir Kendall’s love nest, determined to stop the madness – somehow.
But is super spy Sir Kendall transforming into something more dangerous anyone can imagine? And what will Sir Kendall do when Paul and Alix finally give into their mad lust for each other?
Thanks to Carolyn Crane, one lucky winner will receive an ebook copy of Mr. Real. Good luck to all who enter!
- No purchase necessary.
- Must be 18 years old or older to enter.
- Giveaway open Internationally. Void where prohibited.
- Comments are appreciated, however, you must fill out the Rafflecopter form in order to enter this giveaway.
- Please read TBV's Giveaway Policy before entering.
- Giveaway ends 9:01 pm (Pacific Time) on 11/22/2012.