It’s been awhile since I’ve written an article, sorry about that. I’ve been hard at work on Legacy and another MS that’s completely different. That ones been the screen play.
As you guys probably know I’ve been working with an editor since May and she and I have made a few changes to Legacy. One of those changes was that we went from a first person POV for my main character Alexis and my villain Brenton to a third person limited POV. On my first revision I got Brenton’s voice nailed in this new POV. Alexis however needed a little work, I needed more showing and not telling. Let me just say having a character who’s an empath is not the easiest person to show and not tell.
First person worked but it wasn’t great. And like my editor I’m really liking what I can add to Alexis in third person. In first person I was so close to Alexis that I’d miss things readers needed to see. In third person I’ve been able to add those in. Plus I’ve added in more senses, which all characters need.
I hope I’m not making this sound easy, it wasn’t. To make sure we picked the proper POV I had to rewrite the first twenty pages five different ways. That’s right I tried five different POV variations to see which one worked. I started with the second original POV which was first person. I’d originally written Legacy from a third person POV but when I was in my MFA thesis class I changed it to first person, (I really wish my advisor would have been more help, I could be by-passing some changes and working on the characters rather than POV change) and took out a lot.
After making the changes in the first person POV, I tried Alexis as first person and Brenton in third. Next I tried Brenton in first person and Alexis in third. I tried both in third person and then I tried first person with Alexis only, taking Brenton’s part out completely.
My editor and I didn’t like Brenton being gone. He adds something to the story. Sometimes you just want to know what trouble is brewing and Brenton brings that to the table. I think James Patterson for that. I got the idea of having the readers meet the villain from his Murder by Numbers series.
Anyway after working through the five POV’s I was torn over which one was best. I’d actually started thinking that having Alexis in third person and Brenton in first person was my favorite. However my editor really like the third person POV for everything so that’s what we are going with. And with that change I think this last batch of edits, which was the first fifty pages turned into sixty-four when I got finished, and its turning out wickedly awesome.
I’m getting into Alexis and Brenton’s psyche better because I’ve stepped back a little and can see around corners that I hadn’t done in first person. I was to focused in first person and missed great extras that added a richness to the story.
I recently finished the edits and sent them off to my editor and now I get to sit and wait to see what she thinks. This is a little nerve racking and I’ve had to work on more edits since sending out the email. The waiting has been like when you send out query letters and wait for a bite. I’m hoping that if she likes these changes we’ll be moving forward and I’ll get a contract. Yeah right now I’m working with my editor without a contract. She found me from a post I did on Savvy Author. I’d posted my log-line for an agent and this editor really like it. She said it reminded her of her favorite Stephen King novel. Months later we’re still working out the kinks and headed toward a contract and publication, hopefully… fingers crossed
So for those of you working on our MS, working with either an agent or editor listen to their input. Sometimes what you didn’t want to change needs to go so you can create an even better MS.