Tuesday, November 29

My First Time

This week on WordWranglers we're talking about our very first manuscript!

Oh, gosh.

My BFF, Kim, and I took a class at the college and I started a book. I titled it Dance the Dance. It was the only good thing about that piece of work! I knew nothinbg about POV, grammar or voice.

I, however, finished a book!

Dance was about an older woman/younger man, and the obstacles they overcame (conflict) to be together, including his mother who hated the relationship and her younger sister who was jealous of it.

I entered it in a couple of contests (yeah, I've been contesting that long), and unlike Liz yesterday, it did NOT win! Boy, did the judges rip it up. Not only did they point out every error, they hated the story. They absolutely detested the younger man. I'lll never forget that one judge told me she had a son older than my hero. Another one asked just how big were my heroine's boobs because I mentioned his attraction a couple of times!

Shawn, who picked this topic, asked if this was someting you would dig out to try to fix.

NO!

Dance the Dance is awful; I know that now.

But what Dance did for me was prove to me I can finish a manuscript--and that, my friends, is not as big of a group as one would think!

Tell me about your first manuscript? Did you finish it? Sell it? Burn it?

26 comments:

  1. Good post, D'Ann, and I still love that title!

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  2. LOL. Love the title.

    My first MS was last year - I finished it and promptly hid it LOL.

    My second MS will be on sale Dec 5th LOL

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  3. Great post! It took me 9 months to finish my first novel. Then 4 months to rewrite it after an agent requested it--I'll let you know if it sells:)

    I could def tell you though I without a doubt noticed how much I had grown as a writer and that was really cool to see. I still can't believe i rewrote the whole thing! That was some work.

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  4. My first manuscript finaled in a couple of contests and received numerous requests but no offers. I couldn't understand why. THe original version of the story was awful and developed into something not half bad, at least judges liked it, but unfortunately I can see now that my heroine was too wishy washy and i've made so many changes to the story that if I were to dig it out again, I would just start it from scratch probably. Would I dig it out again and rewrite it? Most likely I will eventually since it's not that bad, but it's not on my priority list at the moment. What it did succeed in doing is showing me that I could finish a manuscript and it served to show just how far my writing has come from when I first sat down to write that story.

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  5. My first finished ms is hand-written and sitting in an envelope in a box with other terrible manuscripts, lol! You are so right, D'Ann, finishing a novel is one of the hardest parts of writing. Revisions-easy. Finishing-hard. Great post!

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  6. Great post D'Ann! My first manuscript was rewritten and tweaked to within an inch of its life. Took me over a year, but I learned a ton writing it. It's actually coming out in March. But, I can also see where I've changed in some areas as well. I think that's normal though, each ms you learn and improve and it shows.

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  7. I didn't burn it but I should have. It was horrible. Not only did I not know about POV, etc, I didn't even know how to format the darn thing! I wrote it in 10pt Times New Roman SINGLE SPACED! Its a wonder I didn't go blind. It was a medieval story about a woman forced to marry another man but in love with someone else. I'm not even sure I have that story anymore and I'm pretty sure I never finished chapter one before another plot took my fancy.

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  9. I loved the story behind my first MS, and still do. Is it worthy to dust off and rewrite? Absolutely. Does it need work? Yes, and lots of it. One day I'll work on it when the time is right. It's a western so, D'Ann, you ought to like it. :)

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  10. My first novel ended up in the bottom of a drawer as well. I was also a college student at the time. But I did learn a lot. Since then, 11 books have been published.

    Jacqueline Seewald
    TEA LEAVES AND TAROT CARDS
    THE TRUTH SLEUTH
    now available on Kindle:
    THE INFERNO COLLECTION,
    THE DROWNING POOL

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  11. I co-wrote a contemporary romance with a friend. We submitted it to Harlequin. Believe it or not, they kept it for a year and it go right under an editor's nose. Then they sent it back.

    Erm, looking back, it was awful. There are some loose threads in it. It head hops quite a bit. I'm not even sure why they didn't send it back the second someone looked at it. Right now, it's in a hard copy format laying on my dresser because I read it last year. Would I like to do it over? Yeah. Can I find the time? No.

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  12. Love the title of your first mss. Glad you kept writing. I love your stories!

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  13. Love the post, D'Ann.

    Three years ago January I started my first novel. I finished it 6 months later--all 187K of it! I've let it rest while I wrote other things but I pulled it out briefly last summer to revise, but had other things intrude. It's revision is on my To Do list because I still LOVE the story. The writing sucks, head hopping enough to make you dizzy, but I believe it's redeemable as a trilogy. And I believe enough in the story to take the time to revise it.

    But then I'm the eternal optimist!

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  14. My first MS is so close to being published I can't stand it. I may just indie-publish.

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  15. Great post, D'Ann! Lol, the title was sure to grab many people's attention.

    My first MS is still undergoing revision. I've been published--small presses and self-published, but they were all either shorts or novellas.

    I sometimes think the revisions on my first MS will never end, but I believe it's a good story. Now I just have to apply all I've learned since I first wrote it.

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  16. I finished it...and for the rest, you'll have to read tomorrow! :)

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  17. OMGoodness, it was told in first person. Need I say more.
    LOL this was a great post!
    Neecy

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  18. My first is sitting in a file folder on my desktop. It is unfinished and has every mistake possible. :) I like the plot so I may dig it out one day and start fresh, now that I know what I'm doing.

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  19. Pubbed my first ms Wyoming Dreamer in 2009. Pubbed my second last month (Marry Me Under the Mistletoe). I just keep plugging away hoping to get noticed someday.

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  20. D'Ann the first thing I ever wrote was a Lord of the Rings fan fiction and it took me forever to finish it had ideas for things to happen over and over. The one story I won a contest with I never finished. I wrote an ending for the synopsis but I never finished it. I sent it to the requesting editor but it was rejected. I was pleased with the rejection though. The first time I entered something into a contest it was sad. I was so sure I had a winning entry. Man was I surprised lol. I had never heard of POV, being military it meant Privately Owned Vehicle (POV) and I kept going what does a car have to do with what I wrote? Color me naive? Great post and I do like the title did you ever use it again?

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  21. Great topic!

    I wrote my first book ever in 11th grade as a journaling exercise for my English class. It was set on a Georgia plantation during the Civil War. It was written long hand in three notebooks! Yes, I've always written long. I'll never forget my English teacher, Mr. Lantz, asking me to stay after class one day after he returned our journals back to us at the end of the 3rd marking period. I was about 2/3 of the way finished with the story. He asked me if my novel had an end. I told him what I'd envisioned for the ending, and he commented that he liked the story, especially my heroine because she was such a strong person.

    Would I ever salvage that book? Probably not, but I've always loved that story.

    Fast forward almost 20 years. My next original novel (that wasn't fan fiction) is A Hunter's Angel.

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  22. Thank you, everyone, for coming by and for your comments! I appreciate it so much!

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  23. My first will never see the light of day. Who knew you can't sell an inspirational/secret baby/spy thriller with flashbacks, steamy sex and a heroine who shoots the bad guy right after church? Not to mention all the scenes where the heroine sat in the tub, drinking wine and staring at her navel. At least I didn't throw in stretch marks.

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  24. D--good story. Loving reading about everyone's first time. Can't say too much about mine--check back on Thursday

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  25. Oh, man, I believe I have you topped, D'Ann. My first was a ode to a boy band member. More fan fiction than anything. It was awful but I thought it was a masterpiece. An editor at Pocket told me otherwise, yet in a nice, constructive way. Live and learn, right?

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