I’ve got one more day to work on this rewrite before I have to set it down and do the page proofs for A PERFECT BLOOD. For those of you who are interested, page proofs are produced at the same time as the ARCs, and therefore will still have mistakes and errors in them. My publisher doesn’t like it if I have to make more than typo changes, but if there is an error of fact, I can change it while trying to make minimal shifts in the text.
I usually make an event out of page proofs, clearing my desk and radically changing what I’m listening to. Sometimes I move out of my office entirely. I try very hard to find typos–but what I’m most interested in is the movement of characters so that Rachel doesn’t stand up twice without sitting back down between them, or that she remembers to take her purse if she walks out of a room. I like physical movements, almost as much as my dialog, and often use them to remind the reader of where we are, what time of day it is, or the mood she’s in. ie “Arms over her chest, Rachel sat down, her bobbing foot, catching the morning sun that slipped in past the kitchen’s small window.” But you can’t just stick a line like that in without making sure everything follows. This is typically the last time I will EVER read any given piece of work, and when it’s done, I don’t look back. Sometimes, it takes chocolate.
After today, I should have enough changes made in the next book so that I can use the page proofs to find where I left the emotional state of everyone, and then begin my rewrite over to lightly tweak it to emotional smoothness. Timing is everything.
It’s also Friday, thank all that is holy in the world. I need some time to push back and regroup. No plans for the weekend, but I might make tapioca pudding from scratch, as in soak-over-night scratch. I’ve also got a pie I could make from my home-grown pumpkins. It’s definitely going to be a kitchen weekend. We’ve already been threatened with the first frost of the year, and though I know we will have some warm afternoons yet, it’s clear that summer . . . is over.
Keep your eyes open for another manic monday. We’re going to move out some jewelry next.