Friday, April 29, 2011

Have I Mentioned How Much I Like Quotes?

"The research is the easiest.  The outline is the most fun.  The first draft is the hardest, because every word of the outline has to be fleshed out.  The rewrite is very satisfying."  -Ken Follett

I'm with you, Ken.  I'm with you.

Anyone else with him?

Monday, April 25, 2011

On Typing THE END.

You might have noticed that I've been rather scarce around here for the last few months.  Here's one reason:

This means that I work at a plant nursery, and spring is our equivalent to the Christmas season. 
But here is the the main reason:

This is Siria Nightingale.  She's the protagonist in my WIP, and she's done a fairly good job of keeping me singularly occupied since December.  Turns out, her story was one of those utterly consuming ones that doesn't let you rest until you've sat your little self down and told it in full.  But here's the good news: Today I typed the words, THE END at the bottom of Siria's word document.  This means I can relax a little bit, because revisions are not quite as consuming as first drafts tend to be.

But that brings me to the main point of this post.  I have a few questions for you all.  

If you are a writer, here's your question:

When you type THE END, what does your next step tend to be?  How do you personally approach the massive undertaking of revising, editing, and polishing your manuscript?  Do you use beta readers?  And if so, how do you find them, and what do you ask them to do?

And if you are a reader, here's yours:

What do you expect out of the ends of books?  What has made you feel most satisfied when you close the back cover of a book, and what makes you want to open the front cover right away and read it all over again?  How do you feel about cliffhanger endings?  In a series, what kind of ending makes you ache with satisfaction, even knowing that you have more books to read before you know the whole story?

Please share!  I have loved hearing your responses to previous questions, and I find the variety of opinions fascinating.  Happy Monday to you all!