Monday, February 12, 2007


Received recently via email:
I want to thank you for entering the 15th Annual Heart of the West Writers Contest, and congratulations on your First-Place finish with Cold Truth. We had many entries this year, and submitting your work for others to review takes courage. I commend you for your efforts and hope that you receive valuable feedback.

Attached are the pleminary round judged entries. You will receive the final round judged entry in the mail. Our final round judge this year for Mystery/Suspense was Allison Lyons of Harlequin Intrigue. She requested to see your project along with a synopsis and SASE for a reply. Congratulations on this request and good luck with the submission!

What to do? What to do?

I had originally planned to target Harlequin Intrigue. Then, I decided my story was ending up bigger than that, that it needed changing, needed more, needed to be single title. I started tearing it up, writing new POV's, adding depth to secondary characters. Then, I got this email.

What to do? What to do?

After much thought, quite a bit of stress, feelings of inadequacy, and some conversations with some pubbed writers, I've decided to refix it and send it to Harlequin Intrigue. (They did ask for it afterall.)

I reread parts today. I took a hard look at the first 20 pages. I added quite a bit. I tried to show the external conflict more clearly and quickly. I set up my heroine a bit differently. Why hadn't I seen her that way before? Anyway, I think it works better now.

I decided to look at the book in four acts instead of three. Wow! That helped, too. I see how I can rearrange a few big scenes to use a great scene I already have as the Supreme Ordeal (Hero's Journey). This scene will lead to the Supreme Romantic Ordeal. They will overcome their issues with each other long enough to act on that lust that's growing. No, they won't make love yet, but ....

I'll have to add a few early scenes. I need my heroine to share what she knows -- well some of it -- with the hero. She is a secret keeping kind of girl, afterall. Then I need to flip-flop some scenes. Then I need to get those new ones written.

Then what? How does one get a manuscript ready for that submission process? Do you hire a proofreader? Do you do it yourself? Yikes. Yikes. Yikes.

Ah.... After a month of feeling bad about my MIP (that's MASTERPIECE in progress, hehe), I feel good about it again. Why? I'm back to my original vision for it. I originally planned it to be a series romance. I'm keeping it that way, at least for now. If Intrigue says "no", then I may tear it apart and see how it looks as single title, but who knows.

I do have that other story -- the one I've been thinking about for longer than I've been writing this one -- that I'd like to tackle. That one will be single title.

For now... I'm closing the MIP for tonight. I'll tackle the next 30 pages tomorrow. However, I've got to go read an Intrigue book now and prepare an email for a local writer for that line. Whatever she can tell me will be helpful.



Unknown said...

Wow, Macy. Congratulations. This is SO EXCITING!!! It couldn't have happened to a better person. I'm very happy for you.

Cinderwriter said...

I am so excited for you! I feel like jumping up and down on my bed shreaking like a teenager, but I do not have anyojne to hold hand with while I jump! EEEEEEEEE!!!!! CONGRATS!!!!!!