BACK TO WORK

 

Bone Mandala by Steven Vella

Bone Mandala by Steven Vella

What a delight it is to send the hubby off to work and the children off to school and settle down at the computer to do some actual writing again. 

First stop this week was my Cambodian novel. I wrote the first draft in 2005, under the title “Chocolate Brown Vanilla”. Since then it’s been through a number of name changes, including “Women Are Cloth”,” When it Rains” and most recently (my favourite) “Child of Fortune”. It’s undergone some huge changes in the seven years I’ve been working on it, with some highs like getting a spot in the QWC/Hachette Manuscript development award, winning an ASA mentorship with Judith Lukin Amundsen, and recently making the Amazon shortlist: and some big pits of lows – all those rejections from publishers.

Working with Judith on the manuscript has been incredibly helpful. To have her wise and experienced eyes on the manuscript I’d read and almost written to death was the perfect cure for my jaded vision of it.

Like the best of midwives, with a few carefully chosen words she steered me back in the right direction, while letting me keep control and total ownership over the process.

Writers out there with a manuscript that you feel like spewing on every time you get it out to redraft, an editor’s input will make all the difference. I promise. This week I’m reading it aloud, to catch any awkward sentences, and looking for ways to bring more life to minor characters. It’s almost done. And then I’ll be sending it out into the world to find a good home.

Next week I’ll be tackling the much bigger job of a major rewrite of the latest novel, “Into the Fire”, set in the cane fields of far north Queensland.

I always hope that my process will become shorter, that I won’t need all those years to get a story just right. But so far, I’m about two years in on “Into The Fire”. Sigh.  With any luck, sooner rather than later, I’ll get some good editorial guidance, preferably from a publisher and save myself a few years.

The lesson here? Never give up. As  I’ve told  my students and friends many times. Persistence is the key. The only key!

Lots of love

Edwina

Rendezvous at Rendezvous

Edwina and Thrill Seekers

Edwina and Thrill Seekers

I’m getting very excited about my upcoming author event at the wonderful Rendezvous Readers Teahouse in Dayboro north of Brisbane on Friday 25th May at 10 am. Not least for the delicious Devonshire morning tea they’re putting on. I’ll be talking about the process of writing Thrill Seekers and the rocky road to publication and will probably touch on the writing of my Cambodian novel ms, When it Rains, as well. My Australian Society of Authors mentor, esteemed editor Judith Lukin-Amundsen is hoping to be there too with extra advice on the editing process. I’m looking forward to meeting local writers and sharing the highs and lows of finally becoming a published author. I’d love to have a good crowd so please come along, and spread the word to anyone you know who may be interested. It will be lots of fun and hopefully inspire some new writing too.

TOP FIFTY!

YEEHAH! OH YES OH YES OH YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Made the top fifty in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award! Click here for the good news. My stomach was churning as I saw the Ds come up and then there I was. Top  fifty. Top 1% from the 5000! Och Miene Gute!
 
Click here to read an excerpt and write a review of your own if you like.
 
You may not have noticed but I’m very, very excited. It’s like getting a spot on THE VOICE for writers!
 
Huge thank yous to all those who “liked” my entry.
 
Love to all,
Edwina

AMAZING AMAZON!

A man picking lotus near Angkor Wat

A man picking lotus near Angkor Wat

The world seems to be turning suddenly very fast for me at the moment. First the launch of Thrill Seekers after waiting so long and now this! My Cambodian novel under the title “When it Rains”has made the quarter finals of the Amazon/Penguin USA breakthrough novel awards. It feels like a miracle. 

Here’s what the Amazon reviewer had to say about the excerpt,

“My overall opinion of this excerpt is that I can’t wait to read the rest. It is sad and revealing yet true and important. Apparently from reading the pitch, the author experienced this trip to Cambodia and has put together this fine piece of fiction so that through this story others may read and get an understanding of life in this country. It is very, very good writing. ”

That makes my day!

 
If you have a few minutes could you please click on the link, join Amazon if you haven’t already – it takes less than a minute I just did it – , then “like” my entry.  If you’ve got an ereader you can download an excerpt and do a review.
 
And if you’re feeling extra benevolent please share this link too.
 
Thank you all so very much.
 
I hope that one day I can help you make your dreams come true too.
 
With love,
 
Edwina