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Authors Seeking FREE Betas > supernatural/fantasy manuscript

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message 1: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments 467 page, 164,550 word manuscript. Want informed feedback before I go editor shopping.


Roughseasinthemed | 263 comments That is hellish long, and will certainly cost you on the editing side. What about asking for people to look at a few chapters rather than 165,000?


message 3: by Leland (new)

Leland | 31 comments A blurb or short description will also help.


message 4: by Dakota (new)

Dakota Rayne | 199 comments Mod
Definitely a blurb! I'm curious about the duality of the supernatural and fantasy components


message 5: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Here's the blurb: Ellese Madison had success, money, fame and respect. Then, during a visit to her family, an encounter with a man she hadn't seen in years upended everything. A moment of time, and a shared dream, open her eyes, and Ellese sees that everything she thought was perfect is anything but.
More?


message 6: by Andrew (last edited Jan 27, 2017 09:40AM) (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Roughseasinthemed wrote: "That is hellish long, and will certainly cost you on the editing side. What about asking for people to look at a few chapters rather than 165,000?"
Yes, I know. I'm hoping that I can use the feedback from beta readers to figure out what I can drop/get rid of to shorten it further (the first draft was 615 pages long!). Not really sure getting a few chapters read can help on that front.


message 7: by Jessica (new)

Jessica | 115 comments I'm interested, but that blurb tells me nothing about the actual story haha. I'm assuming this is more urban fantasy? What are the supernatural elements? Also, you may want to try cutting more on your own. 165K is two books in one, and is overwhelming for a fee service...


message 8: by Roughseasinthemed (last edited Jan 27, 2017 10:46AM) (new)

Roughseasinthemed | 263 comments More on the blurb please. No challenge/obstacle. Sounds more like romance right now.


You have to able to reduce that word count. Seriously.


message 9: by HitC (new)

HitC (hitcgirl) | 136 comments Hey Andrew,

I agree with Jessica that the blurb needs some more specifics. Things like "a moment of time" and "a shared dream" sound cool but don't actually give info. Try to use the blurb to tell the character's objective, what gets in the way, and what's at stake.

You may not be sure, but do you think the manuscript is so long because you told two stories worth in one book or because you just wrote a lot about one story? Writers tend to over-write and often a scene that we think needs ten paragraphs really only needs five. Save all your really great writing for the most important/interesting scenes. Other stuff can be told with just the basics. Hopefully these two tidbits of advice help!


message 10: by Dakota (last edited Jan 27, 2017 11:17AM) (new)

Dakota Rayne | 199 comments Mod
I'm actually working on the same thing. My ms was about 170K as well and I'm working on shortening it down, or rather, taking out the unnecessary prose and tightening up the scenes. I would definitely recommend a dedicated and highly skilled beta that is willing to go through the ms and offer suggestions. I also have some worksheets that I've used to analyze each chapter and help me eliminate or rework scenes to be more effective to the story I'm telling. Between both of those strategies, the story is turning out to be much better than it was when I started.


message 11: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Jessica wrote: "I'm interested, but that blurb tells me nothing about the actual story haha. I'm assuming this is more urban fantasy? What are the supernatural elements? Also, you may want to try cutting more on y..."
Actually, no. Most of the story is set in small towns and the countryside, some of it in North Dakota, some of it in Ireland. I used the term "supernatural" because it came closest to a recognize genre. Here's the break-down: the MC is a successful lawyer based in LA, but she was raised on a farm outside a small town in North Dakota. She goes home to visit family when she can, and before one of these visits, she receives an email from a man she grew up with. They have a complicated relationship: friends growing up together, first love interests, but neither able to admit their feelings. He asks her to meet him to discuss unspecified legal matters, but what he wants to do is tell her how he has always felt about her because he is dying. He has become an expert on shamanistic religions, and has learned how dreams may be guided. When she arrives, he has an idea, to use his knowledge of guided dreams to share a memory with her of a 'perfect moment' and to tell her of his feelings. He does this, but to his surprise, rather than the two of them seeing a vague image of his memory, they seem instead to *be* in the moment. They struggle to adapt to their circumstance, and after an accident, admit their love for one another. My MC persuades her love to stay with her, to share their dream for as long as possible, and they live a life together in the moment. But dreams can't last forever, and this one ends when the MC's love dies in reality. She emerges from their shared dream, but her time with her love leaves her with his memories. Those memories return to her in her dreams, in dreams where he seems to speak to her again. That is where I draw the "supernatural" aspect from. Does this help explain things?


message 12: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Roughseasinthemed wrote: "You have to able to reduce that word count. Seriously."
Agreed, which is why I'm here looking for readers to give me input. I've managed to cut 148 pages from the first draft to where I am now, so if someone can give me an idea of what I might be able to do without, or shorten, I'd be happy to hear.


message 13: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Tiffany wrote: "You may not be sure, but do you think the manuscript is so long because you told two stories worth in one book or because you just wrote a lot about one story? Writers tend to over-write and often a scene that we think needs ten paragraphs really only needs five. Save all your really great writing for the most important/interesting scenes. Other stuff can be told with just the basics. Hopefully these two tidbits of advice help! "
Others have suggested that I try to break my story down into two or more parts, but for the life of me, I can't see how I can break it and not destroy the flow of the story. So, I'm guessing I need to find ways to say more with less words..and input would from others would help. Volunteering? I'd welcome the help.


message 14: by Cimone (new)

Cimone Watson | 93 comments I would like to help you. Your story sounds interesting. The only thing is, I can't start until the end of next week. Is that cool, or are you on a tight schedule? (I can PM you if you want.)


message 15: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Cimone wrote: "I would like to help you. Your story sounds interesting. The only thing is, I can't start until the end of next week. Is that cool, or are you on a tight schedule? (I can PM you if you want.)"

PM sent to you, and thank you for volunteering. Anyone else who is interested in giving my manuscript a read is welcome to contact me.


message 16: by HitC (new)

HitC (hitcgirl) | 136 comments Andrew wrote: "Tiffany wrote: "You may not be sure, but do you think the manuscript is so long because you told two stories worth in one book or because you just wrote a lot about one story? Writers tend to over-..."

Hey Andrew, I am completely booked with client projects right now, but if you're still working on it in March, email me at tiffany@owlediting.com and I'll try to help. I can for sure go over a chapter and give feedback on how to say more with less words.


message 17: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Tiffany wrote: "Andrew wrote: "Tiffany wrote: "You may not be sure, but do you think the manuscript is so long because you told two stories worth in one book or because you just wrote a lot about one story? Writer..."
Thanks, and I might take you up on that offer. I'm working with one person who's trying to help me focus my manuscript , but I am not finding easy it as easy to boil things down as I thought I would.


message 18: by Sandy (new)

Sandy Frediani Andrew wrote: "Roughseasinthemed wrote: "You have to able to reduce that word count. Seriously."
Agreed, which is why I'm here looking for readers to give me input. I've managed to cut 148 pages from the first draft to where I am now, so if someone can give me an idea of what I might be able to do without, or shorten, I'd be happy to hear."


One of the first things I do to cut my word count is use contractions. I've instead of I have, we'll instead of we will, don't instead of do not and so on. Yes, there are times where no using a contraction is needed for emphasis - You will not cut off the dog's tail (giving an order). Most of the time though, use contractions. They cut your word count and speed the reader along as well.

The second thing I do is look for places where I can use one word instead of two or more. This is more difficult, but also cuts the word count and makes your writing 'tighter.' Again, there are exceptions, but not as many as one would think.


message 19: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Sandy wrote: "Andrew wrote: "Roughseasinthemed wrote: "You have to able to reduce that word count. Seriously."
Agreed, which is why I'm here looking for readers to give me input. I've managed to cut 148 pages fr..."


Thanks, Sandy, but someone who read my story earlier complained that I used *too many* contractions, so I'm not sure how much more I could employ them. On the other front...well, I'm working on it.
Thanks for the observations.


message 20: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Sandy wrote: "Andrew wrote: "Roughseasinthemed wrote: "You have to able to reduce that word count. Seriously."
Agreed, which is why I'm here looking for readers to give me input. I've managed to cut 148 pages fr..."


Thanks, Sandy, but someone who read my story earlier complained that I used *too many* contractions, so I'm not sure how much more I could employ them. On the other front...well, I'm working on it.
Thanks for the observations.


message 21: by HitC (new)

HitC (hitcgirl) | 136 comments Hey Andrew,

I offered to read a couple of chapters for you in March and give feedback on how you could tighten things up if you were interested. My editing schedule is currently open, so if you want me to take a look email me at tiffany@owlediting.com.


message 22: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Reynolds | 14 comments Tiffany wrote: "Hey Andrew,

I offered to read a couple of chapters for you in March and give feedback on how you could tighten things up if you were interested. My editing schedule is currently open, so if you wa..."


Sorry for not getting back to you earlier. I'll send you off the first couple of chapters shortly.


Roughseasinthemed | 263 comments Rick wrote: "I am interested. Please email at rick.j.thom@Gmail.com for payment details. Thank you for your consideration. I feel my prices are very reasonable."

Rick I think you have mistaken this thread. This discussion board is for authors requesting free beta readers.


Roughseasinthemed | 263 comments Rick wrote: "Yes I did I am sorry. Admin please delete."

You can always delete it yourself :)

Small print, bottom right. Not too difficult.


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