No Soul, No Service lessons learned

For better or worse the current draft of No Soul, No Service is done. I’ve sent the first chapter out to my Beta Readers. That’s right, five poor souls have volunteered to read it. I sent the first chapter out yesterday and am waiting with trepidation for their feedback.

Lessons learned:
1) Pre production can ease a lot of heartache. A lot of us want to get right into the thick of it, putting words down and getting that story told. Had I done more pre-planning, a more comprehensive outline, that kind of thing, I would have probably had a smoother time. It also didn’t help that I was taking a 12K short story and stuffing it full of anti-bionic free chapters to fill it out.
2) Story Bible – this probably falls into the Pre-production category. This is keeping a list, however you do it, of your characters, locations, and story items so that you can keep them straight as you write. I’ve been working on building the bible, starting with the things in No Soul and I’ve also been adding from Angel’s Kiss. If you are going to write a series the story-bible is essential so that you can quickly bring up details about a character or event.

Things I think I did right:
1) I stuck with it. By the Gods I stuck with it. I finished this thing. Technically I’ve finished it three times with each major revision. I kept at it, nose to the grind stone and all of those other metaphors.
2) I recruited Beta Readers. I actually girded up, put on my big boy pants, and  sent off the first chapter. Now the waiting begins.
3) I gave the story a name – not just a production title.

Things I still need to do:
1) Get a cover designed.
2) figure out a marketing plan
3) revise yet again based on Beta feedback
4) Send it off to an editor and try not to drink my liver into submission. 

There are probably more things I should add but the above lists are my biggies.

In other news I’ve been pushing forward with the revisions into Angels Kiss. I’ve gotten all the additional chapters integrated. I now get to go through another major pass to try and make sure it’s as cohesive as I can make it. The great thing about putting a project aside for a period of time is you can come back to it and look at it with fresh eyes. I’ll probably give myself a concussion with all the forehead slapping I’m about to do, but I think it’s a strong story.

I have an idea for the cover for No Soul, I’m sketching out some ideas to figure out the best way to do it.

That’s it for this week. Another rambling post but I’m hoping to get more laser focussed in future installments.

As always please provide feedback or ask questions below. 

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