I have to admit I’ve not read all the books featured on my guest blogs. That had been my original intention so I could make some really intelligent comments about them and gush about how much I loved them. Of course, that never happened I’m not Superman or woman in my case.

This week is different, as I’ve read 3 books by this author and loved them – despite being in a genre I would never even consider – but they were recommended, so I bought the first, read it in a day and then immediately got the second …. What I loved about her Renova trilogy was the premise that it could, one day, come true.

Terry Tyler the stage is yours.1 New

First of all, I’d like to thank the lovely Lucinda (sorry if I’ve made you sound like a 1960s magician’s assistant) for inviting me to her blog!

I wasn’t quite sure what to write about for a while, but I imagine this might be of interest to other writers (and maybe come as a surprise to readers)―I’m talking about THE FEAR that lurks in so many writers’ minds all the way through the production of a novel.  What is it?  It’s the fear that you’re writing a load of rubbish.  If it’s a sequel or a series, and the previous one has been well received, you can add to that the worry that readers will find this one a disappointment.

After writing many, many novels (15 published, 9 or 10 unpublished), I’ve found that my process always follows more or less the same pattern:

Step 1: Get idea.  Mull it around for a while to see if it has legs.

Step 2: Develop plot in head.  Write basic plan.  Start writing.

5K words: Question my conviction that this idea had legs.  Feel unable to get into the heads of any of the characters.  Have to force self to write, every step of the way.

6K – 15K: Start to understand who the characters are but worry they are wishy-washy duplicates of those I’ve written before.  Realise plot isn’t going to work quite as I thought, and make various alterations.  Feel sure it’s banal rubbish.

16K – 30KWell, I’ve got this far, so I may as well carry on.

40K: Consider scrapping.

50K – 60K: Start thinking it might be okay.  Realise what wasn’t working and why, go back and make notes in mauve about where I have to change/add things, but it’s okay, it’s fine, they can all be dealt with in the first rewrite.

70K: Begin to love it!  Feel it’s really coming together!

71K: Me to husband: “I think I’ve lost any talent I’ve ever had.  It’s garbage.”

Husband: “You always say that.”

Me: “Yes, but this time I mean it.”

Husband: “You always say that.”

72K – 80K: See light at end of a tunnel.  Try to push to back of head what a huge task the first rewrite is going to be.

80K- 90K: Realise it’s going to be far too long.  Tell self that a story should be the length it needs to be, and as long as it’s well edited and your readers are enjoying it, it doesn’t matter if it’s 15K words longer than originally intended.

90K – 100K: Who cares about those who say that 70K is the ideal length for a popular fiction type novel, anyway?

105K – end: Thank God that’s over.  Type ‘the end’, feel a nanosecond of victory, go and stare at telly.

1st rewrite: Ahh.  This really is terrible.

2nd rewrite: No, but it seriously is.

3rd rewrite.  Hang on.  I think it might okay.

Subsequent rewrites: It’ll be okay.  It will, it will.

Send to proofreader, who is also first test reader, then spend every day I don’t hear from her thinking that she doesn’t know how to break the news to me about how bad it is.

Next, there is the second test reader, who is über-picky, which is good, but it’s very hard at the time!  Then there are all the final amendments, the realisation that I should have added a scene here and there, the massive plot hole, etc., but onwards I go to the end.

Then it’s up and ready to press ‘publish’ on the given day, and I feel a tiny moment of accomplishment and deep joy.  Next, the ARCs are sent out, and the whole panic process starts all over again.

I sometimes wonder why I do it!  Recently I read a tweet that said something like, ‘how come writing is the thing I want to do most in the world, all the time, but at the same time the thing I want to do least?’

That just about sums it up.  Now, I must go and carry on with the current WIP that is currently over 90K words long and nowhere near the end, a mess of mauve notes, with characters that have changed personality between chapters 14 and 15….

Thank you once again, Lucinda!

Thank you, Terry, what a relief to read that I’m not the only author who agonizes over the rubbish I scribble.  I realize now there are more books of yours for me to find.

Check them out on Terry’s Amazon page

Amazon UK



and her blog

Till next time, take care.

30 thoughts on “MEET TERRY TYLER

    • Ah, thank you for reading, Olga!

      …. and thank you for this, Lucinda!!! Just read it through (and thought ‘what a load of rubbish’, of course!) whilst eating toast and marmite, before I hit the WIP again – currently at 106K, with two chapters to go…!!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I’ve loved all Terry’s books which is why I decided to give the Renova trilogy a go. Very glad I did. And it’s so good to know she also has the same self-doubt as the rest of us.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This post so resonates with me. I love Terry’s work so it’s a relief that she goes through the same doubts as I do. Wasn’t sure if I should read the Renova series – “not my thing”, I said. But, as I read the first book I realised that I was enjoying the story because, as always, it is character driven and one of Terry’s strengths is her ability to create great characters. For anyone who hasn’t yet read any of her books I would saya
    try any of them – you’ll be hooked.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Mary, Sally, Lucinda and Olga…. the current RIP (Rubbish In Progress!!!) is the fourth book in the series, so the proof of the pudding will be later this year, I suppose!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I’ve only written two novels and the rest of my books are memoirs, but yes, I can relate to sooo much of that fear. The only consolation is that once it’s ‘out there’, we can move on…to go through the same process all over again…haha. Great post TT. I am a fan as you know, so no secret about that! Looking forward to the next already, even if I have to wait until the end of the year! And the thing you can be sure of is that there will be plenty of us who will snap it up and love it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ah, but will you, Val? Or will you secretly think, ‘What’s this crap? Has she totally lost it? Oh dear, do review honestly or kindly???’ That is THE FEAR….

      Thanks for reading! xxxx

      Liked by 2 people

      • I’ve always written what I genuinely think in my reviews for you. I can’t see any reason why I shouldn’t do so with the next one 😉 I have my favourites among your books as you know (Dream on, Full Circle, The Other Side and the Renova three) and you know the odd couple I’ve had reservations about but still enjoyed. I can’t think of another author whose novels I ALWAYS read and who writes in so many different genres and whose books I still want to keep reading! So there! Hats off, TT!

        Liked by 1 person

    • Val, thanks so much… words fail me. Which isn’t a very good advertisement for my writing prowess, but I’ve had a long day (and been wrangling with Lottie’s descendants!!). I love that you like Dream On and Full Circle – they’ve never done that well for me, perhaps because you have to be a bit of an old rocker like us to fully appreciate them, but I have a great fondness for them!!!!

      And yes, we do move on, don’t we? I can’t even remember all the plot and characters of some of my earlier books, but I was so absorbed in them, once!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m looking for something else to read now that I’ve finished Lucinda’s Amie series…I’ll have to look into these, the series sounds interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Great interview, and very reassuring since I was sure you, Terry, never had any doubts about your writing! How could you? You write so well! And you’re so creative – the varied story lines and ideas are amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

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