Did You Know?

Erin L. Schneider is native to the Pacific Northwest, attended college in Honolulu - and although Hawaiian - should never be allowed on a surfboard. With more than twenty years in corporate merchandising, she’s now a full-time writer living in Seattle with her husband, Neal; their baby boy, Kellan; a rowdy German shepherd named Ronin; and two crazy cats, Ono and Poke. She’s a member of both the Pacific Northwest Writers Association and SCBWI, and is also co-founder of the YA Buccaneers.

SUMMER OF SLOANE is her debut novel, out May 3, 2016 from Disney-Hyperion.

Erin is represented by literary agent Lisa Grubka of Fletcher & Company.

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Entries in Rewrites (1)

Tuesday
Jul032012

Re-Writes, Schme-writes: I'M FINALLY DONE!!!

I am so happy to be able to finally write this post, after all, it's been almost one year in the making! Because late Sunday night / early Monday morning, I finally - and I can't believe I actually get to type this:

I Finished my rewrite on THE LUCKY FEW.

Almost one year ago - July 11th to be exact - I queried Mr. Agent Man...and received a phone call from him the very next day, requesting an exclusive revision. And, well, of course I jumped at the chance!

A few weeks later, he sent me a detailed letter that was single spaced and ten pages long. TEN! 10.

And after reading those pages, I realized exactly the opportunity I was holding in my hands - but what I wasn't prepared for, was the challenge to rethink the entire platform of my book. As in, "what if we looked at it this way?" 

To which I went through the following:

Wait, what? You mean my book isn't amazing as-is? Huh. I thought it was pretty good. Wait, now that you mention it, maybe it's just so-so. Okay, NOW I get it, I see what you're thinking!

And voila! An entirely different focus was born...although that in itself, took several months to get to. Lucky for me, there was plenty of back and forth, which included multiple emails and conference calls with he and his fabulous assistant (did I mention the complete and utter state of shock I was in, that this was even happening?). 

It was all so exciting - first to be working with someone of his stature, second, to be getting top-notch feedback, and third, to be working with an agent at all.

But man, rewrites are tough.

And I constantly struggled with what could stay - always analyzing if the writing in question, moved the story forward - but what was worse than that...was what needed to go. It was like watching the series finale of FRIENDS (one of my all-time favorite shows!), or finishing the last sentence in MOCKINGJAY. And I realized it was as if I wanted to put it off, so I wouldn't have to say goodbye.

But then I heeded the advice of one of my fabulous critique partners - Heidi S.:

Just get in there and do it - and stop over-thinking it all!

Or something like that. I'm sure it was much more eloquently written, but none-the-less, it had the same impact. She tends to keep it real like that. And it's for this that I love her so!

So I took Heidi's advice and I got in there and did it. I axed almost 35,000 words *eek*, then rewrote 40,000 more *yay!* The past two weeks have been serious late nights...and I can't remember the last time I was in bed, before 2:30am. Which makes for a very long day at the office, when my alarm goes off at 5am.

But I so want this. I almost ache for it. And knowing I was so close to being done, I knew it was something that I just had to do. Besides, late night writing is my favorite, when all is quiet in the world. 

And late last night, after re-reading it again, I was finally able to send it off to my CP's. Now it's in their hands to tear apart. And I look forward to reading all their suggestions, feedback, and seeing a smiley face or two, when they read something they like. 

Then once they're done, I'll make my final revisions and off to Mr. Agent Man it goes! And I can't wait.

Until then, I look forward to having Thursday and Friday off this week. And the fact I may be able to go to sleep at a reasonable hour tonight. In fact, I may sleep through all the fireworks, once my head hits that pillow.

And that's okay by me. Because I'M FINALLY DONE.

And my fingers are crossed. 

Rewrites or revisions - what was this process like for you? 

Happy 4th of July (or belated Happy Canada Day, to my friends to the North!) - wishing you all a wonderful week! And I completely forgot - looks like tonight might be a later night than I expected, but for an entirely different reason: my husband and I are going to see Joan Jett! I know, you're jealous. :)