I received the editor’s comments on the first draft of “Five Dead in Richmond”. Much as I expected, there is a lot of work ahead. I haven’t yet begun to examine the assessment in detail as I am occupied with a photographic project on Tarot cards. Further, the photographic project leads me to create other images, thereby taking up more of my time.
Because I have scheduled time to work on a final draft of “Stalking Alice”, it will be several months before I get around to working on the first draft of “Five Dead” and producing a second and third draft. But then, nobody said it was easy. Books don’t write themselves.
I made a half-hearted attempt to get an agent for “Stalking Alice”. Out of nine submissions, three replied in the negative, the others said no by their silence.
I always felt that MS would need another draft to satisfy an agent and a further draft to meet the demands of a publisher’s editor. Not only that, but the title could be better. I have a another working title of “Suspicion Falls”, but I don’t think that’s strong enough. Not only is “Stalking Alice” too suggestive of violence, but it is too associated with the antagonist, Lewis Cole, when the focus of the story is on Alice and the resolution of her deep seated issue. I need a title that’s catchy, related to the protagonist and the log line:
Wrongly implicated in a London terror attack, a troubled young woman must defend herself from the vengeful attacks of the twin brother of one of the victims.
Originally, I used the adjective “misogynistic” to describe the twin brother, but I believe that skews Cole’s motivation too far. Revenge is motivation enough, and while Cole is misogynistic, it is casual, not a dramatic driver.
Starting in February, I shall run “Stalking Alice” through the cleaner, remove any unnecessary misogyny and polish the MS. I hope it shines by the time I’m finished. That first draft seems like a long time ago….
I’ll be in Bearra next month, and following some hard work and dedication, I hope I’ll be admiring a final draft rather than staring into the setting sun, desperately seeking inspiration.
Lenny. January 2020.