Saturday, November 12, 2005

Transition time

I got feedback on The Eyes of Crow from my editor yesterday (she liked it a lot--whew!) and have to turn in the final manuscript as well as an outline for Book 2 (The Voice of Crow) by December 15. The edits she asked for were not numerous or major, but since this is the final final draft, it's my last chance to make the book as strong as it can be. Therefore I plan to use the full month-plus to "perfect" it.

So I will spend this weekend in one last glorious immersion in the vampire novel, writing as much as I can. Then comes the transition period. It's excruciating, quite frankly. I don't know how writers can flip back and forth between projects like they were interchangeable pairs of pants. For me it's like tearing off one personality and squeezing into another one. (Why this brings to mind some sort of comic book supervillain, I'm not sure.)

The fact that these two projects are so different doesn't help. One is contemporary, set in a fictional version of my town; the other takes place in an invented world recognizable as earth but with few modern trappings (and no slang--aaugh!). One is comedic; the other serious. One is skeptical and sarcastic; the other deeply spiritual. If my two heroines were to meet, I don't even know if they'd like each other, although they could probably have an hours-long conversation about dogs (and boyfriends who bear a remarkable resemblance to Cillian Murphy).

Both women are equally "me;" they're just different parts of me. Neither enjoys being stuck in a drawer.


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Jeri Smith-Ready is a Maryland author of books for teens and adults.

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