Friday, June 12, 2009

In other words

Mind F*cked has surpassed 20,000 words. I expected it and agreed to extend it with 35k in mind. This is good as now I can write the story and allow it to finish in its own time instead of squeaking it under the wire with a hasty ending.

A group of authors was asked recently how they wrote contracted story lengths. The annoyance expressed by one reader clarified that he had read a book which seemed to carry right along until suddenly it ended. Plot lines were left loose and the conclusion left much to be desired. He asked if we proposed a length or were told a length by which to wrap up a full story.

It's a good question. I thought I'd post one of many answers here. I'm fortunate to have flexible publishers (with some exceptions. *Ecccccccccck* *Ecccccccccck* Sorry. Clearing my throat. *ECCCC!*) who give me free rein. Mostly, I send a proposal with my expected range and aim for that number. Experience tells me how complicated the plot must be and when romantic/sexual elements must be introduced.

One publisher will take a completed manuscript submission before issuing a contract. Another does a bit of both, depending on what slots they need filled (no pun intended) and if I am writing for a specific line.

If a story cannot be adequately told in the provided word limit, I ask the publisher if I can extend. I've never had them say no.

Other shit: Book two of the Darkness series continues to wait. Should have news of it's status in ten days. Thanx to those who've asked.

Other-er shit: I'm planning books into 2011 now. My writing calendar is slated to complete a work every month. Most of them are shorts and therefore not a risk to quality. The publishing world does not cease to amaze me. May there be room for them all.

Note to self: "Mia, there is much to be said for time-off. Why do you do this to yourself?"


Molly Daniels said...

Very ambitious of you:) Good luck!

I tried writing within a certain word count (15K for two submissions and 50K for NaNo) and find I'm more comfortable with a 30-40K range. I felt the plot was rushed in my first two short attempts, and ended up lengthening the one which was accepted and is now available. (Kenzie Michaels' All She Ever Wanted at Freya's Bower, in case you were wondering...)

(sorry for the shameless self-promo!)

And during NaNo, the wip tried to naturally end 3 times before attaining that 50K level. It's now been chopped back down to 42.

Julia Barrett said...

Mia - you really do plan ahead. I'm so impressed! I write when the muse takes me. It's so hard for me to write when I have a deadline or a specific word count. I really struggle with that.

Mia Watts said...

It begins more like this:
Suggested Title: Crap in a Basket (25k m/m/f paranormal erotic)

Availability: Submission of completed by April for requested release date in December 2014.

Set-up: Hero1 is a shapeshifter rat with a massive scrotum. Hero2 is a posh English gent who reads auras, Heroine is actually an energy field who materializes only for sex.

No, not a real proposal. Please. Sometimes I'm asked to elaborate on the set-up, in which case, I might then add: Hero1 is read by Hero2 while in rat form such that Hero2 realizes Hero1 is a shifter. Heroine has been lurking in alternate dimension waiting for energy of shift to materialize. Her visibility results in immediate and swift copulation as a requirement for permanent body formation. Antagonist is an energy sucker who banished her 800,542 years ago when she denied him.

That usually takes care of the proposal. I guarantee any story proposed is subject to change but the general idea is there.

Julia-Am so unimpressive, trust me.
Molly-Kenzie will find this easier and easier.

Amber Skyze said...

I agree with Julia, you are impressive and one busy lady. I plan two or three books out, but nothing that would take me to 2011! Way to go.

Rassles said...

Oh, I envy your planning skills and imagination. More importantly, how you're so sure of it. Awesome.