Today, I'm going to take a little time out to talk about my book. I haven't really done a lot of that, actually talking about it, although I mention it from time to time. However, there are some changes coming up with it and a new tab, so I thought I'd talk a bit about what's going on there.
I made my book available for purchase back in January. That was probably a little earlier than I should have, but I'm glad that I did. I'll go more into how all of that came about sometime later, just in case any of the information is valuable to anyone. At any rate, I thought I'd done a fairly good job on the editing here at my computer, and, to a certain extent I did; however, when I got my proof copy and started back reading it in my kids' classes at their school, I started picking up mistakes that I had missed on the computer screen. I was fairly horrified. None of them were horrible enough, though, to prompt me to pull the book from availability, as many of them were only recognizable as mistakes to me. Except a homophone early on the book, which I decided to ignore, for the moment, and the inclusion of the wrong name for a character late in the book (that was the one that really horrified me).
Anyway... none of that is what I really want to talk about.
There are several things that are unconventional about my novel, but, then, I'm fairly unconventional, so what can I say? One of those things is changing. I'm not really sure how I feel about the change, though, which is why I'm here talking about it.
One of the things I wanted to do with the book is give it the feeling of a story that's being told by a group of kids, 3 kids, to be exact. Now, if you've ever tried to listen to multiple kids trying to tell you how something happened, you will realize that what you don't get is a nice, steady stream of information. What you do get is a lot of interruptions and arguments. I wanted the book to feel like that. To do that, there are flashes of arguments and fighting between the siblings as they tell the story. The flashes switch from the 1st person narrative of whomever is speaking at that moment to 3rd person. I kind of like the feel of it.
However... it breaks the flow of the story. Of course, this was, actually, the intent. Again, if you've ever tried to listen to a group of kids tell a story, you frequently have to guide them back to the point from whatever disagreement they are having. And here's the conflict: the kids I read to seem to really like those parts. They're funny. They get lots of laughs. A few of them have told me those are their favorite parts (including my own oldest child). Adults, though... well, those parts don't really seem to be working for the adults. They're too jarring. Break up the flow too much.
I waffled on this issue for a long time. Is it a book for kids? or is it a book for adults? Well, hopefully, it's a book for both. I think it is. If it's a book for both, what do I do with those bits? In the end, I decided that, although the kids love those parts, they'll still like the book even without them in there. Adults, though, may not like the book with them in there, so out they go. Of course, this should also serve to drop my word count, not that I think my word count is too high, but it's certainly too high by industry standards.
All of that to say, if you want to really see my editing process, I'm making that available to you. The new chapter 1 for the 2nd edition of The House on the Corner is available via the tab up there at the top of the page. The old chapter 1 from the 1st edition of the book is available to read here. If you feel like you have the time, read them both, and let me know what you think. Once I'm ready to release the 2nd edition, however, I will be removing the old chapter 1 preview.
That being said, if you're interested in the 1st edition of the book, it only has a couple more weeks of availability. I should be finished with my revisions for the 2nd edition soon, and I'm going to pull the 1st edition about a week ahead of releasing the 2nd.
Thanks for indulging me! I hope you enjoy the read. If you do, let me know. If you don't, let me know that, too.