Writing has been my way of life since I turned twenty and began studying journalism – I started writing for my college newspaper and never stopped. Out of college, I began working in television newsrooms where I not only had to write every day, but often under a deadline that might be seconds away.
Over the years we discovered that while we both worked hard and put in hour after hour of work, our styles were totally different. Sue has always been totally focused on structure and enjoys the plotting process and building the characters before she begins working. She is the epitome of the planning writer.
WhileI’ve written about our different styles and approach in the past and how it can be successful, today I want to focus on our editing process. We also edit differently and how you can adopt our method to make certain your own work is polished and ready to go out the door.
our first work
of fiction together. It is a cozy mystery that features two older women on a crusade for justice after one of them
has her artwork copied and forged. We have basically finished writing our story
and now we are currently in the editing process..
Sue and I
Sue and Ihave taught together and written non-fiction books together, but currently we are working on
But the editing process has taught us more about the overall writing process. No book is going tosucceed if it is not carefully checked and edited. Readers will not spend day after day enjoying the best characters or a fast moving plot if there are errors or poorly written grammar in the book (unless it’s done in dialogue to define the characters). Editing can make a real difference.
time, we have decided there are basically three different types of writers that
we have encountered.
I started out writing romance stories. I liked reading that genre and I liked writing it. But then I also liked reading mystery and suspense too – I mostly read mystery series, so I decided to try writing romantic suspense and I’ve never gone back to straight romance. I like the element of danger in romantic suspense novels and I also like writing a series. I have three going currently – My Dead Man series and My Blues Series and I just might do a sequel set at Redfern Manor, the scene of my novella Shadows from the Past, a spooky old house with lots of secrets and probably lots of stories.e
We also have differences in developing our characters, though we both agree on developing ways to make our characters come alive. No one loves a perfect character. Readers do not want to read stories where the hero or heroine is always right, always wins every battle and never shows any sort of frailty. Even Superman has his weakness—Kryptonite. Characters should have faults and weaknesses of some sort, even if the weaknesses are small. No one is perfect all the time and your characters shouldn't be either. Determine which flaws you can use for your hero and heroine to make the plots more realistic or more engaging. Overcoming those flaws and weaknesses can be the road to a happy ending.
Sue likes to know those character flaws before starting to write the story and she plans ahead of time on what they will be and how to use them in the story. I like to get characters into a situation because of a flaw and then let them work their ways out.