Galley Slave

January 30, 2009 at 2:50 am (General)


A couple of weeks ago, I had galleys to read for my next Moon book, ETERNAL MOON, which will be out in April.  I loved coming up with the story. It starts when P. I. Renata Cordona is on an undercover assignment. She’s saved from a pack of vicious dogs by a lone wolf who swiftly disappears. Then, out of nowhere, Jacob Marshall materializes and, with his electrifying touch, he sets off sparks between them. Yet she tries to isolate herself emotionally from him because everyone she has ever loved has died a horrible death. Is werewolf Jacob Marshall the key to breaking the ancient curse that hangs over both of them?  Or will the evil stalking them down through the ages destroy them both?

That’s the story. But as I was working on the package from Berkley, I realized that the least favorite part of writing for me is the first draft and the galleys. I hate facing a blank page. So I write my first draft as fast as I can. Once I get that draft, I can edit it within an inch of its life. Every book I write goes through four or five edits. One on the screen and then three or four on paper. That’s just the way I work. I can’t get the story and the characters all at once. I have to layer my way into a good story. And doing those layers is incredibly satisfying to me.

Then–months later–I get the copyedited manuscript, and I see places where I have word repetitions or sentences that seem awkward. I can fix them at that stage. But when I read the galleys, I still see stuff I hate. And there are only small changes I can make.

Sigh. Maybe I’m too much of a perfectionist. I tend to focus on what’s wrong rather than what’s right.

If you’re a writer, what do you like best about the process? And what do you like least?

To be brutally honest, the best part for me is when I’ve sold a book–and I don’t have to start writing it yet! <g>

The good news is that I enjoyed reading ETERNAL MOON. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen it, and I had that usual experience with galleys–”I wrote that?”

It’s a very emotional story, with what I hope is a big surprise at the end. Who is the demon stalking them? I hope I keep you from figuring it out until the last chapter.

And I had a good time with the werewolf elements. Jacob is a “dog whisperer.” And I’ve got a strong subplot with a dog he saves. There are even some scenes from the dog’s pov.

Over the Moon series, I’ve tried to come up with heroines who were the equal of my Marshall men. And Renata is a great example. When she and Jacob make love, they can share their thoughts. And join their powers–to fight the demon trying to destroy them.

So their sexual relationship gets integrated into the suspense. Which gave me some interesting scenes with the h/h. <g>



  1. terryspear said,

    Sounds like a great book, Rebecca! Can’t wait to read it! Lots of times, my hardest part is figuring out which guy is the bad guy. Sometimes I know from the beginning. Sometimes it comes to me as I’m developing the story, then I have to put more clues in earlier on. My best part of writing the book? The meeting of the hero and heroine. I love that first scene!!! Making it unique and fun is the best part. Off to work!!!

  2. Rebecca York said,

    Terry, I usually know who the bad guy is. But I have been known to change my mind in the middle of writing a book. So much for outlines!

  3. Beth C. said,

    My favorite part is creating the world and writing the story the first time.

    My least favorite part is rewriting. This isn’t edits which I don’t really mind. This is where you decide to move your love scene up two chapters and need to add more lead in or where you decide to add another subplot and have to weave them in. I hate this part because it is boring to me because you aren’t really creating anything new. Just moving stuff around or having to think too much to write it into the story. I hate thinking about the story. I just want it to flow out of me. 🙂

  4. Rebecca York said,

    Beth, that’s interesting! That’s what I’m doing on a manuscript now. I don’t mind. I feel like I’m straightening things out that need fixing. I feel good when I realize something is in the wrong place–or I need to add a scene. (Or take one out, as I just did.)


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