Thursday, February 11, 2016

ASK THE SUSPENSE SISTERS!




This week, Debbie asks: “Have any of you ever thrown out a manuscript that just didn't work for you?”

For submitting her question, Debbie’s won a copy of Never Look Back by Kathy Herman!   

If you have a question for us, leave it below. You might be our next winner! You could win a book by one of today’s top suspense/mystery writers – or a gift certificate to Amazon! (Questions submitted without contact information won’t be considered.)

Hmmm. Haven't thrown any out...but I have a file stuffed full of manuscripts I never sold! :)

 Dana Mentink



I don't have the repertoire that most of the other authors do, but I have experienced this situation on just my last book (the third of my Grime Fighter series). I'd already set up that story and started putting the pieces in place when I realized that there was no way to make the story work for the series. Irreconcilable issues. So I tabled the idea for another time and started completely over with a blank file. Funny how all of that empty space stirs my imagination! LOL! And I think Grime Spree turned out great! :)

Marji Laine

I’ve been through all the variations of this theme. I still have a couple of complete novels on my computer hard drive that just didn’t work. They were written before Jeff Gerke taught me the
important question for a novelist: “So what?” In other words, what’s at stake for the hero/heroine if they fail. I’ve also let my first reader (my wife—try that one to see if your marriage survives) look at a story on which I’d written ten thousand words. When she pointed out why it didn’t work, I started over—literally, started over. And the result was one of my prize-winning novels. So, absolutely. If a manuscript doesn’t work for you, chances are it won’t work for the reader, either. Good question.

Richard L. Mabry, MD

I had three books published through a vanity press back in 2006. Once I got my rights back, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to rewrite them. Yikes! The first two are so bad, I'd have to start from scratch. The stories are languishing in a cabinet and may never see the light of day again.

 Cynthia Hickey (Melton)



I haven’t actually “thrown out a manuscript,” but I have a few sitting in my computer I’d like to do something with someday. One needs to be edited, and two others need to be finished. One was actually accepted by a U.K. publisher – until his promotions people decided it wouldn’t sell well in Great Britain because my main character prayed in the library. What????  And another was the sequel to a book that was released by a publisher that started courting and selling gay fiction. I didn’t feel we were a good fit at that point, so she gave me back the rights to it. I haven’t looked at it for years.

Although I want to do something with these unpublished or incomplete novels, to be honest, I’m blessed to be too busy to do it right now.

Maybe someday when I’m rich I can slow down and work on them. LOL!

Nancy Mehl

2 comments:

  1. I know an author who spends regular working hours on her writing, MONDAY - FRIDAY from 9am to 5pm. And sometimes for a few hours on Saturday if on a deadline. She churns out 3 to 4 wonderful novels each year.
    My question is: what kind of hours do each of you devote to your writing? Do you work regular hours or sporadic times? This inquiring mind wants to know.
    tumcsec(at)gmail(dot)com

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  2. Thanks for answering my question. Loved the answers.

    ReplyDelete