No, itâ€™s not about to be made into an iconic movie. No, it doesnâ€™t have a classic line, uttered by an actor of impeccable reputation (“My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.) And itâ€™s not filled with whimsy and sly references. Nor, alas, was it written by an award winning Hollywood icon
If youâ€™ve read Princess Bride, you know itâ€™s supposedly a book read to a young boy when heâ€™s ill, by his elderly relative. When the boy grows up, he looks for the book to read to his own children and finds that his elderly relative was only reading the good parts to him, and the rest of the book was deadly dull.
My mind has been like that elderly relative, remembering the good parts about this particular book and not the rest of the story. So when I offered it as an “exciting and polished read” I was talking about the book of my weak memory, not reality. I was sure I could do one last quick trip through this book, polishing it to a gleaming brilliance in just a few short hours.
Ummm, not quite. In fact not at all. Iâ€™ve transferred the book to my kindle. Iâ€™ve pulled it up on my desk top and my lap top. Iâ€™ve even printed it out on (gasp) paper. And still the words refuse to reorder themselves into any semblance of rational order.
See, when I first wrote this mass of gibbering, I knew nothing about writing. Not that Iâ€™m any great wealth of writing advice now but at least I have learned not to change point of view three times in one four sentence chapter. So I blithely typed away back then, having the hard bitten hero describe the heroineâ€™s hair as: “It rippled in a shining pony tail down the back of her head and caressed her cheek as she bent to help a young mother arrange bags and a sleeping baby. Chestnut with golden highlights, her hair crowned a proudly held head.” Yeah, right. Heâ€™s going to have those exact thoughts right before he pulls out an Uzi and sprays the room.
Okay, so I have a little bit of a POV problem. I could say I have a characterization issue but itâ€™s most likely a need for DEEP point of view. So maybe I “man up” his observations and make him the rough, gruff grunting type. Nope. Still doesnâ€™t feel right.
Instead Iâ€™m going to try going through the beginning of the book again, and this time force myself to stay in the heroineâ€™s POV for a full scene. I might even go for the gold, and keep it in her voice for, are you ready? One. Complete. Chapter.
Yep, I just might try that thing. And maybe Iâ€™ll even make a real book out of this story, you just wait and see! One day weâ€™ll be quoting lines from this book as ifâ€“sorry, I do get carried away sometimes.
Mona Karel is the writing alter ego of Monica Stoner, who had her first book published after only twenty something years of writing. She has two books out now from Black Opal Books, and if she can ever get this one cleaned up she’ll be on her way to a Romantic Suspense series. For more silliness and some neat recipes, check out her blog: http://mona-karel.com/.
Actually I kinda like your surprise opening. One minute he's got this gentle preoccupation with a pretty girl, the next he's gunning her down. Sounds like a perfectly creepy killer. Or maybe I'm just bent.