Thursday, December 1, 2011

Author Guest Post: Mary Lindsey - Shattered Souls Blog Tour

Please welcome Mary Lindsey to the blog!

Purposeful, Deliberate Waffling

When I sold my book to Penguin, my editor, Jill Santopolo made it clear there would be significant revisions. I got my first revision letter, which had several requested changes and dug right in. No biggy, I thought.

Then the second letter came. It was a request for a complete revision and partial rewrite. It took me a few weeks to get my head around the scope and scale of it. Over those weeks, I didn’t work on the manuscript, but I read the letter several times a day, committing it to memory.

Within the 5,000 words of doom, there was a jewel. At the time, I didn't know my editor had a great sense of humor, so on first read, I took it seriously. Now, it is serious in its message, and she was absolutely right, but the delivery is priceless. Hilarious, actually, if you look at in in the context of the terrifying, life and manuscript-altering atom bomb in which it was nestled.

On page 4 of the letter, under Act 3, Plot point 10, wonder editor writes:

Plot Point 10 – The New Reality
· Is there a way to have a scene where she gets peace about her dad? (NEW?)
· Beach scene (EXISTING, but tweak ending)
Basically, the 60% of your story is working pretty well—there are a few new scenes and a few things that need to be retooled, but the momentum is moving in the right direction and things are building on one another. The beginning, though, seems to be a bit muddled. You need a clear direction, and after a few chapters of it, Lenzi’s waffling has to stop. She needs to make a decision and then go with it (around plot point five). And even when she is waffling at the beginning, it needs to be purposeful, deliberate waffling that has its own little waffling arc. Once you have Lenzi making decisions, I think your plot is going to move itself forward in a much clearer way.

Look at that! A quirky little gem right in the middle of the scariest revision letter ever. My favorite part:

And even when she is waffling at the beginning, it needs to be purposeful, deliberate waffling that has its own little waffling arc.

Tee hee! Here’s to purposeful, deliberate waffling. Pass the syrup, please!

Thanks, Christie, for having me on your blog today.

My pleasure, Mary!

Mary Lindsey on the web:
Website | Twitter

Mary's super fabulous debut novel, Shattered Souls, 
releases December 8th!

Isn't it pretty?

Read my review of Shattered Souls here.

Add Shattered Souls on Goodreads
Pre-order Shattered Souls from Amazon


  1. That is too funny. I'll be thinking of waffles now, when I read it.

  2. Congratulations on your release Mary! Shattered Souls sounds great and that is a beautiful cover.

  3. The first edit an author friend received was her manuscript covered in yellow sticky notes from her agent - she said she cried before she started working on it. Unfortunately the agent had her remove one of the delightful characters and changed the book from an adult fantasy into a children's book. Very sad as I loved the original.