If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.

October Interviews

10/07 M.E. Browning, Shadow Ridge

10/14 Alexia Gordon

10/21 Adam Meyer

10/28 Barbara Ross, Jane Darrowfield and the Madwoman Next Door

October Guest Bloggers

10/03 Kathleen Kalb

10/17 S. Lee Manning

10/31 Sharon Dean

WWK Weekend Bloggers

10/10 Jennifer J. Chow

10/24 Kait Carson


For The Love Of Lobster Tales by Shari Randall is now available to download free for a limited time. Go to Black Cat Mysteries at: https://bcmystery.com/ to get your free copy! Thanks for the freebie, Shari.

Keenan Powell recently signed with agent Amy Collins of Talcott Notch. Congratulations, Keenan!

KM Rockwood's "Secrets To The Grave" will appear in the new SinC Chesapeake Chapter's new anthology Invitation To Murder, which will be released by Wildside Press on 10/6.

Congratulations to our two Silver Falchion Finalists Connie Berry and Debra Goldstein!

Paula Gail Benson's "Cosway's Confidence" placed second and Debra Goldstein's "Wabbit's Carat" received Honorable Mention in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable 2020 short story contest. Congratulations, Paula and Debra!

Susan Van Kirk's Three May Keep A Secret has been republished by Harlequinn's Worldwide Mystery. The WWK interview about the book can be accessed here. We're so glad another publisher picked up this series.

KM Rockwood's "Burning Desire," and Paula Gail Benson's "Living One's Own Truth," have been published in the anthology Heartbreaks & Half-truths. Congratulations to all of the WWK writers.

Please join Margaret S. Hamilton's Kings River Life podcast of her short story "Busted at the Book Sale" here. Congratulations, Margaret!


Saturday, June 1, 2019

Comparison by Julie Mulhern

The writing process is a slow one. I compare it to drawing a picture. First, I draw a rough idea, bold strokes without much depth. Then I fill in—a bit of shadow here, a bit of light here. Finally, I step back, erase the smudges, and decide if more work is needed.

Here’s a snippet, start to finish:

Version 1
I awakened the next morning to Consuela’s whines. She needed a trip to the park, please. Now, please.
I pulled on leggings and a hoodie and grabbed her leash.
The lobby remained quiet (my barefoot arrival last night was probably the most excitement it had seen in months). Consuela and I exited to the park.

Version 2
            I pried open my eyes.
            Yip!” Consuela needed a trip to the park, please. Now, please.
            I fumbled for my phone and peered at the time. Seven.
            Was it too early to call Thor?
            Yip!” Me first!
            I groaned, but I pulled on leggings and a hoodie, jammed my new phone and a credit card in my pocket, and grabbed her leash.
            The lobby remained quiet (my barefoot arrival was probably the most excitement it had seen in months), and Consuela and I exited without spotting anyone but the concierge.

Version 3
            I pried open my eyes.
            Yip!” Consuela needed a trip to the park, please. Now, please.
            I snuggled deep into the sheets. “Five more minutes.”
            Yip.” Absolutely not.
            I fumbled for the phone and peered at the time. Seven.
            Ugh. I pushed onto my elbows. Was it too early to call and check on Thor? My sleep-clumsy fingers fumbled with the buttons.
            Consuela glared at me and danced on her paws as if another second’s delay meant the ruination of Yurgi’s carpets. “Yip!” Me first!
            “Just let me—”
            “Fine.” I dropped the phone, pulled on leggings and a hoodie, and grabbed her leash.
            Except for the excited click of Consuela’s nails, the lobby remained quiet (last night’s barefoot arrival was probably the most excitement it had seen in months).
I waved at the politely smiling concierge, and Consuela and I exited to the park.

That’s revision—how do you write and revise?


Jim Jackson said...

It's always interesting to see how others go about their work. Some move from pare to lush, others from verbose to lean. I tend to go from spare to too much and then cut back to what I hope is the right mix.

Margaret S. Hamilton said...

Fascinating! Based on a detailed critique of a first draft I received yesterday, I throw everything on the page and hope it makes sense, and then revise with a chisel, sentence by sentence.

Kait said...

Love a behind the scenes look at another writer's process. Thanks for sharing, Julie! I tend to edit even in the first draft. As I finish a chapter, I take off my writer hat and put on my editor hat. It helps to catch some of the groaners early on!

E. B. Davis said...

Like Kait, I revise until I like what is on the page before I go on, which can be a waste of time. But at other times, fleshing out a scene provides me with ideas that I can go forward with. Thanks for the examples, Julie.

carla said...

I try to don my mean editor personality and be merciless. I do my best revising when I'm less in love with the material!

KM Rockwood said...

I work on a section, rewriting and editing, until I am reasonably happy with what it says. I then put it on a back burner and let it stew, knowing that I will have to revise it later on. I tend to be lean in description (and some emotions) categories, so when I go back to flesh it out, I watch for that.

Sometimes a critique partner will point out something I didn't realize needed extensive revision. Right now, I'm struggling with a scene in a factory on where the protagonist is working on a powder coat line. I evidently didn't make the operation clear enough. The critique partner asked about paint (it's not paint! Powder coat is a polymor) and, if it was a powder, why the people weren't wearing respirators or masks (the coating itself takes place in a booth, which recovers almost all of the overspray, and the powder sticks to the item, which are run then through a curing oven) Obviously I don't want an information dump on the powder coating process, but this comment makes me realize my description is not adequate. Maybe I should switch it to a lacquer line?

Grace Topping said...

I wish that I could write a complete first draft without revision. But I can't go on to the next chapter without reviewing and revising, multiple times, what I just completed. So I will make multiple passes of my work before it is finished.