Here’s your chance to help the Allies and Enemies series make a little bit of history by making it a three-time nominee for a Dragon Award.
Please consider nominating my book, Allies and Enemies: Legacy for “Best Military Science Fiction or Fantasy Novel” in the 2019 Dragon Awards. [It’s the 4th category down on the list. Click the image or link below to visit the nomination page.]
There’s no cost to you and you need not attend Dragon Con to participate in the nomination or voting process. The link to nominate is located here:
Once you register and nominate only one or as many choices as you are comfortable with for the many categories that include comics, movies, games and tv shows. Be aware that you get only one nomination per category. The deadline for nominations is July 19th.
I got my edits back from my very patient and all too kind editor. And now is when the blood-letting starts. For me receiving my edits is a lot like report cards week at school—exciting and full of dread. You know you did your best, but you worry about any nasty surprises that may be in there. (Fun Fact: I got a D in typing my Freshman year. TYPING!!!! Can you believe it?!)
As writers, we are our own worst critics. We like to imagine the worst and allow that to feast on our brains. Any “nasty surprises” I dread would be things like finding out my astute editor has located a universe-ending plot hole that I never realize existed or that I change my main character’s name mid-story and didn’t realize it. But, hey, it happens. The question is how to tackle it in an efficient, brain-cell saving manner.
Here are some ideas on how to do your edits and avoid a brain meltdown: (*Note – I’m assuming that you’re using Word or a word-processing system that has a means to track changes here. And you’ve just got your edits back from your editor.)
“Remember, short controlled bursts.” Define a beginning and an ending for each session of editing and stick to it. If you keep plugging along you’ll start to lose focus and get sloppy. Mistakes will slip through the cracks. Best to come back to it and view it with fresh eyes rather than muscle through. Aim low. Focus on the easy fixes: grammar, punctuation and spelling errors. That will clean up your screen and make it feel as if you’ve made some progress.
Broad strokes. If you come across any changes that affect the whole story, this is where the “Find and Replace” feature is your best friend. For instance, at the start of your story, you spelled your character’s name one way and then mid story got creative with the spelling. You can use Word’s Find and Replace (control + F) to hunt down all the misspelled instances and then replace them with the proper spelling.
Avoid the rabbit holes. When you work section by section with your edits, resist the urge to “jump around” to double check things. If you’re like me, you end up disappearing down another rabbit hole and losing the original thread of your revisions. If you do feel such an urge, scribble yourself a note on an index card or notebook as a reminder for later and then proceed with the edits to the section at hand.
Many editors and beta readers like to use “Comments” to communicate their edits. It’s a great way to keep all the thoughts and ideas together in one spot.
One of my favorite tools for editing and one that’s helped strengthen my writing skills is the Word Loss Diet by Rayne Hall. I cannot recommend this book enough. It’s part of her Writer’s Craft series, which is also a wealth of information. You can find Word Loss Diet for the ebook and at a great price too.
I hope these tips serve you well. How do you like to approach editing? Be sure to leave a comment below or share this post with others.
Star Heroes is a space opera collection with nine novels of the galactic frontier. Exploration, alien invasions, genetic engineering, and artificial intelligence–it’s all here. Blast off with these adventures by New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling authors with one click!
Star Nomad by Lindsay Buroker
In this fast-paced space adventure, Captain Alisa Marchenko must brave sadistic savages, fearsome cyborgs, and brutal pirates to steal a ship so she can find her way home.
Starship Eternal by M.R. Forbes
When a critical injury leaves Space Marine Captain Mitchell “Ares” Williams having visions of a lost starship and an alien invasion, he thinks he’s going insane… He isn’t.
Icarus by Matt Verish
Cole Musgrave’s dream of interstellar travel has become a nightmare. When a delivery is compromised aboard a classified cargo vessel, the unorthodox captain finds himself embroiled in a deadly assignment that will alter his life forever.
Attack on Phoenix by Megg Jensen
Two hundred years ago, an interplanetary expedition crashed on a deserted planet. Catching the attention of the dragzhi, an aggressive alien species, they found themselves in a war they were doomed to lose … unless Torsten Vikker, a soldier who’d rather read than fight, can find a way to save them.
Archangel Down by C. Gockel
Commander Noa Sato doesn’t believe in aliens. She’s too busy trying to save the lives of millions and her own skin to ponder the existence of “others.” Fortunately for Noa, aliens believe in her.
Destroyer by Chris Fox
One maverick captain, an unlikely crew, and an aging vessel are all that stand between humanity and the Eradication.
Space Carrier Avalon by Glynn Stewart
Avalon was the first and most legendary of the Castle Federation’s space carriers, but she is now old and obsolete. Accepting the inevitable, she is sent on a final flag-showing tour.
But war clouds gather and this final tour will be anything but quiet.
Symphony of War by David J. Adams
Lieutenant Marcus Servus and his soldiers, a penal legion, stand against insectoid boogeymen from another galaxy. Marcus has a gift. An edge against the monsters: he hears music. Songs in his head guide him, granting him knowledge and foresight, a weapon against the alien hordes. But who plucks the strings?
Allies and Enemies: Fallen by Amy J. Murphy
Purpose-bred soldier of the Regime, Commander Sela Tyron is as subtle as a hammer. To hammers, any problem can look like a nail, but solutions aren’t always that easy. When Sela encounters a son she is forbidden to know, falls in love with a man who is clearly off-limits, and is abandoned on a planet of insurrectionists, things get complicated.
On the urging of my “unofficial handler”, I’ve had the cover changed to the second book in the series, Allies and Enemies: Rogues. Free ebook copy of it, to the first person who can spot the difference.
So, this week I’m trying something new. I’m going to start posting book reviews for my fellow indie authors. My first victim, Jeff Favreau’s Break Away. It’s the first of a two parter, horror/thriller with Darryl Dixon’s favorite cross bow playpal, zombies…
If the zombie apocalypse were to arrive tomorrow, any Walking Dead fan probably has mused how they would react. Some may envision themselves as heroes, rising to the challenge of fending off the hordes of living dead. Others might fantasize about taking shelter in a deserted shopping mall until the affair blows over. (Anyone that’s seen the movie how well that goes.)
I’m fairly certain that, although I’d like to think I’d become Sarah Connor and kick undead butt, I’d just end up a delicious snack. (Honestly, in the height of panic at a fun house attraction, I once shoved my mother in law, a tiny 4 ft nothing woman, directly into the path of a man in a xenomorph suit in a bid at escape. Not my best moment. In my defense, the alien suit was very convincing.)
As it so happens, “zombies” featured in Break Away, the first book of the Jordan Rose Duology by By Jeff Favreau are not exactly reanimated corpses, but living hapless victims of an insidious viral infection that’s stumped the CDC. These baddies are more like the Quarantine or 28 Days Latervariety of “zombie” and about as cuddly.
Thankfully, there some well-developed protagonists in a small town in Maine to help steer the reader through the story with consistent use of point of view. The style is very descriptive in terms of visualization and engaging the reader’s senses.
Elements of the narrative did seem to slow in pacing to accommodate some essential exposition. However, I tend to read space opera where exposition can really lag a story if it intrudes into the narrative. So, no problems there!
Horror stories do not usually require a great deal of exposition/world building so it’s easy for the pacing to unfold quickly. And, at just south of 160 pages, Break Awayis a quick read that keeps the action running.
As suggested by the title the action promises to continue with the second in the line-up in this thrilling two-parter. I look forward to enjoying the second installment in this series.
Check it out on Amazon. Part two of the series, Homecoming, is available as well. And I’ll have a review for that up soon.