Today I completed the first draft of my novel, The Evil Overlord Society’s Guide to Becoming an Evil Overlord (yes, the title’s a mouthful). For those not already subjected to my many late night emails with plot changes or villain name debates, and therefore unaware of the premise, it’s a parody of a real how-to guide – in this case, how to become an evil overlord. Like many of my blog posts, it involves comic books heroes, super-villains and plots for world domination.
Though I couldn’t be more thrilled to finally see the entire thing on paper (or computer as it were), the idea of editing it overwhelms me. It’s akin to the anxiety I dealt with starting the first chapter. Over abundance of adverbs, passive voice…I’ve got it all.
However, I read something interesting in a blog post by Chuck Sambuchino, editor of The Guide to Literary Agents. New author Rebecca Serle posits “You don’t write a book. You write a sentence and then a paragraph and then a page and then a chapter”, sage advice I’d have appreciated last year when beginning my manuscript. But perhaps this philosophy works the same way with editing. I’m not revising a complete novel, but a page, and then a chapter. And then another chapter, until it’s finished. Still a challenging project, but not quite as defeating.
Luckily I have a wonderful support system to help me in this daunting task. A few sarcastic friends not afraid to point out spelling errors and plot holes. My mother, an incredible writer herself. And The Houston Writer’s Guild – a group of aspiring authors who meet once a week to help each other with editing and general writing catastrophes. Special shout out to Terry Lee-Rosing and Julie Tuovi Hansen, not only great friends but fantastic writers. Check out their blogs!
In short, thanks to everyone for all your help support, and if you don’t see much of me for the next few weeks, someone make sure my novel didn’t murder me in my sleep….