Monday, February 27

My favorite manuscript...and about D'Ann...


That's our topic this week. Coming off a long and busy weekend, I've been thinking about it...and thinking...give me a minute. I'll be there.

But first, a shout-out to my friend and CP D'Ann, who just signed a new contract. I am sooooo pumped for her, but I'm not giving you the deets. She gets to do that, so stay tuned!

Okay. Manuscripts. Favorite manuscripts. Lessee...eeny, meeny, miny...no, not that one. Geeze, it's like having a favorite child. Not happening. Except...

One More Summer, my book that's out now, is probably the one that's closest to my heart. It took hardly any time to write but a long time to sell and I'm proud of it. I can't even give you a reason I feel that way, but I did from the moment I first typed Chapter One.

Conversely--or is it perversely? I'm not good with those--the one I feel the least emotional about is one that sold comparatively easily (if the comparison has to do with a bridge in the desert). It did well and got mostly good reviews, but I'm more removed from it than the others.

My friend Judith Palmer has a lyrical voice and I love her stories and her Hoosier people who are ones I've known all my life. I've read most of her manuscripts and favor them over many published books I've read, but even among those, none of them stands clearly above the rest.

I think some of my favorites are my Starts. Those are the first chapters I've written with the certainty that I was absolutely onto the Great American Novel. I go back and read them sometimes, thinking I'd like to finish them, but the misfortune of being a pantser is that sometimes instead of springing helpfully into place in a new story, sometimes the plot stays hidden. Forever.

My apologies for such a disjointed entry. I don't think I've made all that much sense, but now I'm curious about what you think. Do you have a favorite of your own or of someone else's?

17 comments:

  1. Ah, Liz. You made me cry, again. Thank you.

    My fave ms is ... Mississippi Blues, the story all editors, agents and readers the world over hate.

    It's the story of my heart, and I love it, and hope to sell it one day.

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  3. I hope you do, too, D'Ann. Thanks for coming by!

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  4. I think my absolutely favorite book - one I still think about today - is a YA romance called PS I Love You. It's just. . .sigh. Filled with high emotional upheaval, a high school love story, unrequited - and then requited love - and then love lost. I read it when I was in Jr. High, again in high school...and its still on my keeper shelf. Planning to let bebe inherit it in a few more years.

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    1. Oh, I did that with UNDERSTOOD BETSY. I just KNEW my daughter and grandddaughters would love it as I did. Nah. Not so much. Hope bebe's more discriminating than my girls. :-)

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  5. My favorite of my own is the one that's with my agent--my first book and the book of my heart, THE MUSIC IS YOU. Second is the story that came from it--LIKE FINE WINE--I used a secondary character from MUSIC as the heroine in that one and even though she's older, she's sexy and has a great story. Interestingly, I tried so hard to write her story in third person, but after several false starts, ended up telling her story in first person. I simply couldn't do it any other way.

    One More Summer is one of my very favorite books, Liz! I tell everyone about it!

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  6. Jeez, I go to WordWranglers to read my writing buddy Liz's comments on her fave ms. and halfway through read my own name! How weird is that? But since you asked, Liz...my fave among my literary offspring is whatever one I'm working on. Because? The characters won't let me go. They wake me up at night, they follow me around, they ask to go out(no-no, that's the dog)...I expect to see them coming down the street, mowing the neighbor's yard, standing in line at Starbucks (yes, we do have one of those). And if a ms. stalls, as See-Saw has stalled, I'm living in a continuous loop with these folks. It's like being with my mother's birth family and all their kids--enough folks to fill Wrigley Field's bleachers. If See-Saw ever races into action again, I'll let you know. :-) JP

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    1. Hi, Judith. Thanks for coming. See-Saw's a great one!

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  7. I once told someone that my favorite book was the one I was working on at the moment. But, truth be told, I do have a secret favorite, The Sometime Bride, in which I broke all the super-secret, never-mentioned Rules of Romance. Write the book of your heart? Forgetaboutit. Unless you just happen to fit the mold. More on the Rules of Romance in the archives of http://mossaicmoments.blogspot.com.

    Blair Bancroft (Grace when writing & commenting in blog-world)

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    1. Hi, Grace. I know you're right, but some of the rules are crying out to be bent all out of shape, and I've reached the age of liking the bending process! Thanks for coming by.

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  8. Blessings on you, Nan! And I love your titles!

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  9. @Kristina: I remember PS I Love You:)

    My fave ms of my own is Wild At Heart, simply because it was the first time a story 'grabbed' me and wouldn't let me go until it was finished.

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    1. That's a good feeling to connect with the story, Kenzie! I remember P. S. I Love You, too, but it was a Beatles song, not a book. :-) However, I did love it and can still sing start to finish, in a room by myself with a hairbrush for a microphone.

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  10. My favorite is Heartsong, my first medieval romance. I love the time period and the characters took over during the tale. As a result,the series I never dreamed I'd write was born. I just couldn't let those characters go. Working on the story for the third bother now.

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  11. Liz,
    I'd have to say my favorite was my last one, Bronze Skies, that came out in July. It was my WWII novel and it was so interesting to research. I did it on the little known fight in the Aleutians where the Japanese invaded US territory.

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  12. Dreamers was it for me. Loved the characters, even the villian!

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  13. I'm like you, I like to go back and read through some of my starts, especially when I get stuck where I am. LOL. They offer a new promise even if they're just sitting in a file somewhere.
    They offer tomorrow...and then I get back to today and get over my hump and complete a chapter of my wip.

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