Home > Writing > Blogs > Continuity Counts – Updating a Short Story to Match a Novel by Kitty Bucholtz
When I worked in the film industry, I once had the happy job of assisting the script supervisor for a few days. As a writer, I found it fun and interesting to see what went into making sure we ended up with hundreds of little pieces of film that could be edited into a continuous story that made sense. Especially fascinating when you consider that you shoot scenes completely out of order.
With that in mind, I tried to make sure that my novel Unexpected Superhero (published in May) didn’t contradict anything I wrote in the short story “Hero in Disguise” (published last September in our Romancing the Pages anthology). Even with all of my notes and highlights, it seemed to me that there were still a few things that wouldn’t make quite as much sense as I intended (grin!) if you read the two stories back to back.
I’m publishing the short story myself next Tuesday (Oct 15) as an ebook. When I read it over again, I knew I wanted to make some changes. For one thing, I’d decided that all of the titles for the stories in the Adventures of Lewis and Clarke series would have the word “superhero” in them. So the new title is “Superhero in Disguise.”
But more than that, I wanted the tone to match better. We put together Romancing the Pages as a romance anthology, and my short story matched that tone when I wrote it. But the overarching series story in my head is definitely more humorous urban fantasy. So I went through the short and made changes with that in mind.
As I did so, I was pretty sure I was finding some inconsistencies in how Tori, the main character, perceived her unusual abilities. The short is going to be permanently free as a promotion for the series, so I was hypersensitive to the fact that someone could conceivably read the short and immediately buy and read the novel.
It took a few days and a lot of sticky notes, but I think I managed to smooth it all out. (I hope so! LOL!) I’m trying out a new cover style to see how readers react. It may take some time to find the best way to present this series in terms of book covers, but I’m finally beginning to relax about that.
One of the things I’m beginning to appreciate about self-publishing is not only how I can learn to be flexible and make changes when things don’t seem to be working as well as I’d expect, but also how that mindset is influencing the rest of my life. While I’m in an incredibly stressful situation in life right now, I’m noticing that I’m calmer and looking for alternative solutions every time something doesn’t work out.
It’s nice when you can find that growing in one area of your life can provoke growth in other areas, too!
Kitty Bucholtz decided to combine her undergraduate degree in business, her years of experience in accounting and finance, and her graduate degree in creative writing to become a writer-turned-independent-publisher. Her first novel, Little Miss Lovesick, came out in 2011. Her new novel, Unexpected Superhero, book one in The Adventures of Lewis & Clarke humorous urban fantasy series, is now available in print and ebook format.Love at the Fluff and Fold, book one in The Strays of Loon Lake romantic comedy series, will be released later this year. Her short stories can be found in the anthologies Romancing the Pages and Moonlit Encounters, available in both print and ebook formats.