Did you miss me last week? No, I thought not. Well for the last seven days I decided to get my head down and go over Amie 3 once again thoroughly before sending her off to my editor. I’d sent a very early draft through to DH and he found a few things wrong (of course he would).
So, come the morning we sit down together and I steel myself to hear the worst.
ME: Well you can’t complain this time that she never goes off for a pee. She spends half her time in this book behind one bush or another. Her plumbing system is in full working order.
DH: OK I noticed that but there are still no sex scenes.
ME: I’m not sure my readers are looking for gratuitous sex, and I don’t use many swear words either.
DH: I’m not talking bondage and erotica here but you’ve just told me she’s a healthy young woman. She has needs. (Every man’s dream right?)
ME: You know I find sex scenes a little tricky. It must be the most undignified way to behave sober there is. And how can I possibly ever describe it better than millions before me? He whips his clothes off, she rips her clothes off and they wriggle around for a while praying she won’t get pregnant.
DH: I still think you’re cutting it too short you could go into a little more detail. Right, what about this boring bit in the middle?
ME: Boring? And what bit would that be? I can’t have her racing about on every page, it’s not natural surely. Fast paced is one thing, frenetic is another. Look we have her (spoiler) and then she takes refuge in (spoiler) and isn’t this bit (spoiler) exciting?
DH: She’s crying again.
ME: Well I’d cry if I saw (spoiler).
DH: You might, but then you’re not superwoman.
DH: She’s a strong heroine, and I think you’re basing her too much on yourself.
ME: What! Hardly!
DH: Well no, not the brave stuff, that’s not you, but she’s still snivelling an awful lot, toughen her up.
ME: But she’s survived so far, that makes her tough. She’s not an Olympic weight lifter or a body builder. I want my readers to like her and feel for her. If she’s too tough they won’t relate to her will they? If you had your way she’d be dressed in black leather with boots and a whip!
DH: Now that’s an idea.
DH: You want to sell to both men and women right?
DH: Then make her strong, not wet and drippy.
ME: Amie won’t appreciate you saying that.
STRANGE LOOK FROM DH, HE MOVES A LITTLE FURTHER AWAY ROUND THE TABLE.
ME: It’s a writer’s thing our characters live in our minds they are real people.
DH: There’s not enough detail, all these guns for example. What size calibre are they?
ME: Ah, now I did lots of research on the net and I did play with a gun once and those cartridge thingies…
DH: (RAISES EYEBROWS) Magazines?
ME: Yes those things it’s really hard to load the bullets into them and they hurt my fingers. I had a couple of dates with the policeman in Durban and he let me play with his.
DH: (EYEBROWS FURTHER UP) His what?
ME: His gun! I must have had a premonition I would need that experience one day so I asked him to show me where the bullets went and how to load them. It took me over an hour to get all six slotted in against that spring.
DH: Figures. Good thing you weren’t in a shoot out at the time. Now Amie has a car in Durban, what kind?
ME: Does it matter?
DH: Of course it does, people want to know that.
ME: (MUTTERING) If you insist, I’ll give her a Corolla, they make assemble those in Durban.
DH: And a 737 will never get from London to Johannesburg.
ME: Good point, I’ll up that to a 747. So is it as good as the other two? Did it hold your attention? Did you find it exciting?
DH: I read it all the way through didn’t I?
(DH GETS UP TO MAKE COFFEE.)
Well at least I had a nice email from my editor this morning and she says it’s the best thing I’ve written so far (she’s terribly good at the sugar coating stuff), but of course there is lots of work to be done, including my tautologies – I really must look that up, I wonder what they are?
On the brighter side, Amie 1 an African Adventure got a Bronze in the Global E Book awards in popular fiction, so that cheered me up.
Have a great week.