Revisions

All posts tagged Revisions

Aaaaaand it’s Off!

Published July 29, 2014 by Ashley Townsend
anna excited

If you watch Anna’s lips carefully, I believe she’s actually saying, “Here’s my book!” No, seriously. 😉

“Chasing Shadows” is officially being shipped off to the presses as we speak!!!! I tied up the final revisions, literally five minutes before I ran off to work, so I didn’t have any time to process that it was done, finished, finito, fin, finale, 完成了. It was only after I got back from the office hours later that it hit me: I’m done with “Chasing Shadows.” I mean, yeah, I’ll keep a copy of the paperback in every room of the house for easy-access reading (obviously!), and I’ll be working on a bunch of promotions for the Shadow trilogy for a long time. But it took several hours for it to set in that, in a way, I’m past this installment and moving on. Now most of you know that I’m incredibly sentimental and like to make a big deal about/commemorate every event or milestone, so it was a lot to take in when I realized that I never again have to pull a 3 a.m.-writing palooza (which is actually very fun, with the right snacks), pour over and revise some of my favorite chapters, and I’ll never get to write the introduction for a few of the most impacting characters in the series. Don’t get me wrong; I am DYING to get cracking at Book III and can’t wait to hear all of your reactions to “Chasing Shadows,” but it has definitely been a roller coaster ride.

I decided that since those adorable minions are so darn expressive (and adorable), they’re probably the best tool for expressing my emotions over this final chapter of, well, the final chapter of “Chasing Shadows.”  

Oh, isn't that nice? I can move on to the final book...

Oh, isn’t that nice? I can move on to the final book…

 

... FINAL book? Wait, I'm done with this one? What just happened?!!!!!!! Where am I?!

… FINAL book? Wait, I’m done with this one? What just happened?!!!!!!! Where am I?!

 

Then began the emotional eating: an ice cream sandwich, kettle corn, chocolate chips, and a slice of salami, all after 10pm while watching Robin Hood. Yeah, I went there, and it was delicious.

Then began the emotional eating: an ice cream sandwich, kettle corn, chocolate chips, and a slice of salami, all after 10pm while watching Robin Hood with Katie. Yeah, I went there, and it was delicious.

 

And then after, you know, whatever stage this is.....

After, you know, whatever stage this is, it finally hit me:

 

OHMYSWEETGOODNESS!!! Chasing Shadows is coming out in SEPTEMBER!!! *insert a case of the giddy giggles*

OHMYSWEETGOODNESS!!! Chasing Shadows is coming out in SEPTEMBER!!! *insert a case of the giddy giggles*

 

Then I looked at the cover again and just went, "You're welcome, people with eyes everywhere."

Then I looked at the cover again and just went, “You’re welcome, people with eyes everywhere.”

 

Once I come into the Excited Fangirl Zone, I get everything-oriented-with-it swag.  I found a necklace online that is EXACTLY like the one that Will gives Sarah at the end of Rising Shadows. Gotta wear that for the fans!

Once I come into the Excited Fangirl Zone, I get everything-oriented-with-it swag. I found a necklace online that is EXACTLY like the one that Will gives Sarah at the end of Rising Shadows. Gotta wear that for the fans!

 

Lastly, there was acceptance. I love this series and the characters, and it has been such an incredible journey that I hate to leave it behind someday. But for two weeks, I will enjoy what free time I have, take a breath, and then pounce on Book III when I can stand the distance no longer. There are so many other stories I have in mind that I’m thrilled to dive into soon, so I know I can’t stay mentally hung-up on this series forever. . . Eh, who am I kidding? It will stay with me always. And there are a bunch  of writer’s conferences and signing events coming up that I plan to be a part of to keep it alive for all of us.

Will I see you there? I’ll be the smiling, blond-haired author with stars in her eyes and a tree pendant around her neck. 

a new day

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Revision Derision

Published September 17, 2013 by Ashley Townsend

reclining

Editing and revising can sometimes be my least favorite part of being an author. You write something that, in the moment, you feel is so inspired. That is, until you read back over it and wonder how much sugar and coffee you had at the time to make you type such nonsensical gibberish in so hurried a fashion. Then comes the fantastic task of trying to make sense of what you were working on. And don’t even get me started on summarizing! Yes, I would love to describe 900 pages of my blood, sweat, tears, and emotional turmoil in 200 words or less. YES! You’ve heard me share my agony over writing a synopsis before, and it hasn’t changed.

But, there are also some days where revising feels like reimagining the entire story, seeing it from a new angle where the ideas you originally put down on paper can fit so seamlessly into a new and more complex plot that you’re devising—those are the days that just make you smile and remind you that you don’t want to be doing anything else, the days that give you the courage to keep pressing on.

courage ralphu  

Every spare second I have between work and school (halfway there for one of my classes, so huzzah!) is spent on my laptop, pouring over the “Chasing Shadows” manuscript at the same time that I plot out the series’ conclusion on my note cards. I introduced an entirely new character and renamed another to subtly throw in some Robin Hood elements for my own enjoyment, and then I had a “Holy mackerel!” moment when I realized that it would beautifully complicate time travel for Sarah; it makes everything so much more disastrous because they fear her presence is corrupting the past. My favorite “Rising Shadows” fan and fellow writer, who is actually named Sarah—you are the absolute best, girl!—enjoys tormenting her characters as much as I do. I think it must be an author thing, because the farther our characters fall, the higher we have to lift them up, and watching them rise from the mire is a beautiful thing. Anyway, after I let God take the reins on this story, he completely opened up a whole new realm of possibilities for the final book, and I’m adding some minor and major elements to “Chasing Shadows” that are totally setting the stage for a bunch of disaster and perfection in the next installment, which is coming along rather nicely. Even my fellow writer and blogger-friend, Sarah (who is 100% Team Will Taylor), fell for Damien Lisandro against her will. Honestly, he is one of my favorite characters, and I’ve never written someone into a story who controls what I write as much as Damien—every time he entered a scene or opened his mouth, he owned the scene, and I found myself grinning like a giggly school girl or grimacing because I wanted to fix him. I have never been so happy to change an older, moderately interesting character named Bormeo into a handsome, cheeky Spaniard who is caught up with the wrong people, but you love him nonetheless. I can’t wait for you to get acquainted with him, but he’s mine, so don’t get any ideas. 😉   

love fairytales best of all end

God has been so faithful throughout this process, and I love you guys for sticking by my side! I’d appreciate some prayer, though, because I have to make a few big decisions soon—kind of a huge career jump that I’m looking for the Lord’s guidance on. Wish me faith! (sounds way better than luck!)

And can I get a smattering of applause or a “woot, woot!” for a new record of absence to this blog on my part. Four weeks, baby! But, seriously, sorry about that, and don’t be shy about sending me scathing reminder emails to get me back on here. Haha. Time has flown these past few weeks. In that time, “Deception” by CJ Redwine came out, “Thornhill” by Ms. Peacock was released, I had my teeth cleaned at the dentist, and my baby sister, Katie, turned the big 1-7 yesterday. Can’t believe the little girl I used to finger paint with outback (actually, that was just a few weeks ago, but we’ve matured in that time!) is all grown up with her own blog and the title of official Zondervan Book Reviewer under her belt. So proud of you, Kiddo!

www.booksandwonderfulthings.wordpress.com

Oh! I almost forgot. Friday, October 18th, I will be at the Casa de Oro Library Branch for a few hours to talk about my books and the publishing process, and I’m especially looking forward to getting to know a lot of you at the party that day. A few of the San Diego branches are getting started with teen and college age groups one Friday of the month to get kids back into reading, but there is no age limit. Everyone is welcome! It will just be a fun afternoon of getting to know one another and getting involved. If you know anyone in the area, encourage them to come and bring a friend, or if you want me tell kids about the publishing process at your school or library, just shoot me an email. You have no idea how much I love meeting you guys!  

I’m super jazzed and honored to kick off the first Friday of Teen Week and hope to see some of you there! ^__^

 

 

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