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Friday, September 13, 2013

When Your Editor Wants You to Revise…. ~guest post & giveaway by fantasy author Cas Peace

Today, I'm tremendously pleased to welcome a dear friend, Cas Peace, back to share a bit about her writing process with my readers. Please be sure to check out information about her new release, King's Champion, in her Artesans of Albia trilogy. One lucky commenter will win a copy of her ebooks, King's Champion and King's Envoy

First let me start by saying a huge Thank You to Marsha for helping with the promotion of my latest fantasy novel, King’s Artesan, by inviting me on to her blog. I really appreciate it, Marsha! I do hope your readers enjoy this post.

When Your Editor Wants You to Revise….

Becoming a published author is not a simple process. “Oh yes it is,” I hear you say. “You sign the contract and they print your book. Then you’re a published author!” Well yes, but that’s only a tiny part of the story. Getting an offer and signing the contract is actually a minor step through the jungle. “Minor?” you cry. “How can signing a contract be minor?” It’s not minor at the time it happens, of course it isn’t. It’s the biggest thing that’s ever happened to you since you realised you’d actually written a book. One that other people might actually want to read. But it is only the start of what can be a complicated and, at times, traumatic experience.

No, I’m not trying to put you off (if you’re worth your salt, that will never happen!) or make out the process isn’t also wonderful and exciting. It’s just that there’s much more, so much more, to getting your book published than merely signing your name and handing the manuscript over. Much more.

I will freely admit that I can be quite naïve. I hope as I’ve grown older, I’ve learned a fair bit along the way. For instance, I am no longer the same person who parted with £300 (around $466) to have some “agent” read my manuscript. The outcome of that expense? The “agent” absconded with my money, along with a few other mugs’ people’s as well. Serves us right for being so naïve and trusting. However, I realise that there are plenty of things about the publishing business, and process, that I know nothing about. I’m learning as I go along, and mainly, it’s fun.

But not always. Take my latest book, King’s Artesan, as an example. All nine of the books in my Artesans fantasy series were written around 10 years ago. Yes, it took me that long to find a publisher. When you enter into the submitting process, and if you’ve written a series, you necessarily concentrate on the first book. The others get put to one side until, hopefully, Book One finds a home. Only when Book One has been through the editing process, and then Book Two, do you get to spend time once again with Book Three. For me, there was a year between the publication of Books One and Two, so King’s Artesan is even further away from when I wrote it than the first two were. So, when my publishers’ editor asked me to revise some of the closing scenes, I didn’t realise what a hard task she had set me.

It was my fault for having such a complex plot, I suppose. On the surface, the plot’s not hard to follow. It’s actually quite straightforward. The problem comes with the characters, their reactions, and how each twist of the plot affects them. King’s Artesan is the final book in the first trilogy, but many of the characters continue on into trilogy 2, Circle of Conspiracy, and trilogy 3, Master of Malice. If I change something in Book 3, I have to ensure I follow that through into the later books. And because the plot has been written through to its final, cataclysmic conclusion, there are some things I cannot change without destroying what I have.

How did I cope? By writing copious notes, keeping paper trails of every change, and meticulously checking forward to make sure I wasn’t tripping myself up. Was it fun? No, not much. Did I think it improved the book? Yes, without question. It also enabled me to add a piece of the puzzle I didn’t realise was missing. Not of the plot, but a piece of a character’s life that hadn’t really been highlighted when it should have. By rewriting those scenes I was able to incorporate this piece in a way that enhanced the end of the story, and should pull the reader in deeper. It also rounded something off for me, tied off a loose end, made a whole out of a part.   

So, it’s not always a bad thing when your editor wants you to revise!

Author website:
Amazon Author Profile:

Book Descriptions:
King's Artesan
Unable to purge herself of the poison that is slowly killing her, Major Sullyan remains trapped in Andaryon. The only thing that can save her is the Staff, which still lies buried in Taran’s cellar.

Robin Tamsen sets out on a desperate quest to recover the artifact, but the enemy is two steps ahead of him. Sonten knows where the Staff is, and he will stop at nothing to get it back. If he does, Sullyan’s life will be forfeit and no Artesan will be safe.

The race for the Staff has begun.

King's Champion
After surviving brutal torture and escaping from Lord Rykan’s dungeons, Major Sullyan is trapped in Andaryon, too injured to cross the Veils. Slowly dying and determined to find some purpose in the shattered remains of her life, she travels to the Andaryan capitol to offer the Hierarch her sword and Artesan gifts in the fight against Rykan and his vast army. Because women hold no power in Andaryon, Sullyan is met with prejudice, hostility, and suspicion.

Before she can seek vengeance on the field of battle, she must prove herself to the Hierarch’s generals. Finding support from the unlikeliest sources, Sullyan sets a plan into motion to defeat Lord Rykan and end his bid for the throne. The fate of two realms depends on her success, but her strength is fading fast and time is running out.

King's Envoy
Taran Elijah’s quest for knowledge uncovers a plot that threatens the world…

In Albia, the fourth realm, the precious Artesan gift is dying. Although born to the craft, Taran is struggling to achieve his potential. Against his friends’ advice, he embarks on a foolhardy plan to acquire the teaching he craves. Alone, he crosses into Andaryon, the fifth realm, but instead of finding a mentor, he stumbles upon a treacherous plot.

In the wake of Taran’s actions, Albia suffers a series of vicious raids. Major Sullyan of the High King’s forces is sent to oppose them. But a dark and treacherous force is moving through the realms and both Taran and Sullyan will feel its power.

Their craft, the lives of their friends, the very existence of their realm are under threat unless they expose and oppose the evil.

Book Links:

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Marsha A. Moore is a writer of fantasy romance. The magic of art and nature spark life into her writing. Read her ENCHANTED BOOKSTORE LEGENDS for adventurous epic fantasy romance: Book One, SEEKING A SCRIBE, Book Two, HERITAGE AVENGED, Book Three, LOST VOLUMES, and Book Four, STAUROLITE. For a FREE ebook download, read her historic fantasy, LE CIRQUE DE MAGIE, available at Amazon and Smashwords.


Heather Wohltman said...

These books sound great! I love finding new fantasy series to follow avidly!

Mary Preston said...

This series does sound fabulous. Keeping track of everything in a series would be an enormous undertaking.

Cas Peace said...

Marsha, many thanks for posting this and for helping with the Giveaway. Sorry I didn't comment before - I've only just got my head back together after the holiday!

Marsha A. Moore said...

Cas, vacations are hard work but lots of fun too. Welcome back!