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In this post: how I improved my writing process; and what’s next for Nicky Wells, author
It’s done! Oh yes, the first draft of Sophie’s Encore is finished. It came in at just over 105,000 words and I am pleased with it. It made me laugh, and cry, and bite my nails.
It was quite a different writing experience…
Unlike Sophie’s Turn and Sophie’s Run, which were both written in a mad, continuous and single-minded frenzy, Sophie’s Encore was written in small, deliberate instalments. If you added all the time together, you’d find that it probably took me about twelve weeks to write this third book. However, the twelve weeks were spread out over almost five months because there were several other authorly activities that required my attention.
First and foremost, the beginning of writing Sophie’s Encore overlapped with the book launch for Sophie’s Turn, book 1. I spent a significant amount of time promoting my first baby and keeping up with the book tour.
Next, writing Sophie’s Encore also clashed with the editing process for Sophie’s Run. I had a three-week break from writing in November while I took care of publisher edits for book 2; and then another two-week break in December for proofing and final formatting of ditto. Add to that the Christmas festivities, and you won’t be surprised that I didn’t touch the manuscript for Sophie’s Encore at all in December.
And lastly, of course, there was the launch of Sophie’s Run which coincided with the very end of the writing process of Sophie’s Encore. Talk about multi-tasking!
And yet, Sophie’s Encore got done, and ahead of my own personal schedule too. How so?
Two reasons, I think. One is that the frequent breaks and smaller writing instalments actually made for better writing, or at the very least for a better writing experience. I came back refreshed and eager to the manuscript every day; and after the longer breaks, I took the time to re-read the entire work before continuing it, pressure-testing it ‘real-time’. This meant that I had a much greater confidence in what I had already produced, and also afforded me the opportunity of doing a little bit of pre-editing here or there.
Which leads me to the second reason. Having had the benefit of two extensive editing processes through Sapphire Star Publishing also improved the writing process for Sophie’s Encore. Let me remind you that the first draft of my second book, Sophie’s Run, came in at nearly 150,000 words ~ requiring a good 45,000 words to be chopped by me personally before publisher edits and eventual publication. I learned my lesson, but I didn’t notice until I started writing book 3.
Everything I chopped out of book 2 (and book 1 before that) involved amusing episodes or back story that I enjoyed writing but that, in hindsight, didn’t advance the plot. What’s more, I probably knew that even while I was writing them because I got a kind of…impatient buzz from them. A kind of, move-on-and-hurry-up buzz, only I didn’t know what it meant at the time.
With Sophie’s Encore, I did. The first time I found myself writing something that gave me that kind of…nice-but-not-relevant feeling, I stopped. I re-read. I listened to my heart. I thought of the editing process. And I chopped the section out right away.
It’s incredibly hard to gauge this but I think I figured it out. When I re-read the manuscript after my breaks, I whizzed through it with barely an itch for the red pen. My famous ‘Queen of Hearts’ internal editor remained silent.
Of course I’m not deluded enough to believe I have produced the perfect manuscript. In fact, I am quite certain that it’ll require some significant polishing to bring you the very best I have to offer. But I do think it’s the best first draft I have yet produced. Surely that counts! 🙂
What happens now?
Well, right now, I am spring cleaning! I kid you not. I have given myself a couple of weeks off writing, or thinking about writing, while I let my mind come to a rest and give myself distance from the manuscript. To me, that’s a critical part of the process.
And when I’m done with spring cleaning, I’ll get planning book 4. Of course. You didn’t think you’d heard the last of me after Sophie’s Encore, did you? Book 4 will be an entirely new story with new characters and I’ll tell you more about that…nearer the time.
In April, I will take Sophie’s Encore through a first round of author edits, incorporating the feedback of my beta-readers who are busy reading as I write this blog post. I love you, ladies, and I trust you with my baby! Over the summer, Sophie’s Encore will undergo publisher edits and then….before you know it… It will be launch day. 5 September!
When can I tell you more about Sophie’s Encore?
Patience, my friends, patience. I will keep you posted, I promise. Sophie’s RUN is only just out ~ let me share the joy of book 2 with the world before I move onto shouting about book 3. I promise you’ll be the first to know. There’ll be a cover reveal at some point, and I’ll post a synopsis and who knows… I’ll probably share an excerpt ahead of time too. Watch this space!
🙂 Rock on!
On this day in 2012, I had submitted my first novel, Sophie’s Turn, to Sapphire Star Publishing a few weeks previously. I was waiting with bated breath to hear back, having shared this latest submission with only my closest three friends and, of course, my husband. I was trying to keep a lid on it.
So imagine how excited I am today, less than a year that I signed with my publisher, to shout about the release of my second book, Sophie’s Run.
This might be a good time to put a finger in your ears.
About Sophie’s Run
Glamour, glitz, intrigue, romance, weddings, betrayal, travel, rock music, food, a fire, an exploding cake, a gorgeous rock star, a zany best friend and a dashing male nurse.
Rock star suffers unrequited love ~ Dan‘s story.
Best friend loses her way, big time ~ Rachel‘s story.
Boy next door can’t believe his luck ~ Steve‘s story.
Intrigued? Here’s the blurb:
Her famous star remains her rock while life takes her on a little detour…
So she has finally found the man of her dreams; well, she’s seen him, for sure! Yet rock star and ex-fiancé, Dan, keeps getting in the way of her new romance—even if he is just trying to be helpful. A fire, an impromptu mini-trip with Dan, and a dreaded wedding later, Sophie is still struggling to meet the love of her life. Then, just as she is getting it together with her perfect man, best friend Rachel commits an act of unspeakable betrayal. Sophie has had enough. Surprising herself and shocking her friends, she embarks on a secret journey and eventually gets her life back on track.
Sophie’s Run is now available in Kindle edition from Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk, and in Paperback edition from Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk. You can also get the paperback at Barnes & Noble, or download Sophie’s Run onto your Nook (coming soon).
Stop Press! To celebrate the launch of Sophie’s Run, you can get your Kindle copy of Sophie’s Turn for a special promotional price of $.099/£0.77 for TODAY (7 February 2013) ONLY. If you haven’t got it already ~ here’s your promo chance!!
The Preview Party
Yesterday, I had the tremendous pleasure of hosting a Preview Launch Party for Sophie’s Run over on Siren 107.3 FM. Chief host and producer was, of course, the one and only Alex Lewczuk, who very kindly dedicated the midweek drive show to this launch. We had some illustrious guests phoning in and here are the highlights:
THE HUSH ROCK BAND
Lead singer Jazmine Giovanni and guitarist Lee Landrum phoned in from United States to chat about writing, making and performing rock music and shared some rock star moments with us.
We had a fabulous time in studio!
And this is only the beginning! I’ll try to bring you a soundclip for our fabulous chat with iconic rock photographer, Nick Elliott, as soon as possible. Meanwhile, you can already listen to the podcast for the Sophie’s Run Special MidWeek Drive featuring Nick as well as a couple of readings from Sophie’s Run and a chat with Cameron Tilbury here: http://southsidebroadcasting.podbean.com/2013/02/06/the-midweek-drive-sophies-run-launch-day-special/
In the studio celebrating with me were:
The Party goes on ~ Join in and grab a giveaway!
I am celebrating all day over on Facebook! Pop on over and share your music, your rock stories, and your favourite bits of Sophie’s Turn or Sophie’s Run. I’d love to see you there!
Speaking of sharing, I am offering a giveaway! A double giveaway!
First of all, because I love chocolate almost as much as I love rock music, I am giving away one delicious chocolate gift to a lucky winner in the UK or North America!
You can enter here: a Rafflecopter giveawayThe small print: This Gift prize is a product of Unique Chocolate. The Gift prize is subject to availability in your country. If the Gift prize is not available in your country, Nicky Wells reserves the right to offer a substitute gift prize of a similar nature at her discretion. Nicky Wells will require the winner’s postal address for shipping purposes.
I am offering a giveaway of one Amazon gift voucher worth $20/£15 for one lucky winner. To enter, simply share your thoughts on Sophie’s Run with me. Email your comment to email@example.com and your name will be entered into the draw. Competition closes 1 May 2013. Good luck!
Thank you very much for your support over the past months and your enthusiasm for this launch. My job wouldn’t be worth doing if it weren’t for you, my readers, and I appreciate your every tweet, your every like, every email, every piece of feedback, every idea you share. Rock on!
A big thank you also goes to the following people for all their support: my husband and my family, Amy and Katie at Sapphire Star Publishing; Alex Lewzcuk and the team at Siren 107.3 FM; Linn B Halton; everyone at loveahappyending.com; my writing buddy, Sue Fortin; THE HUSH BAND; Nick Elliott; Kim Nash; Sharon Goodwin; Nova Reylin; Tobi Helton; Kate Verrier; Evelyn Chong; Katie Mettner. You guys are my rock stars and I couldn’t do this without you. Mwah!
A Shared Book Birthday: Give It Up for Elizabeth Arroyo!!
Congrats, Elizabeth, I hope you have a rocking first Book Birthday! XX
It only seems like yesterday that I posted right here when Sophie’s Turn turned up in paperback format in my house. It is, in fact, only barely five months. Five months! And I am the proud author-owner of my very own second book.
Sophie’s Run. It’s here!
This one wasn’t eight years in the making. I wrote it from October 2011 until February 2012, taking about fourteen weeks to complete it.
I was going to publish in the summer of 2012. That was before I signed with my fabulous publisher, Sapphire Star Publishing, of course.
So Sophie’s Run got a little waiting period but here it is…
Oh my God.
Of course, this time, I knew what was coming. I knew I would be overwhelmed with joy and… glee. Yes, pure and unadultered joy at holding another book of mine in my very hands. I’m telling you, the feeling is just as great as first time round! And it’s not just me who’s insanely proud, it turns out…
Oh, this gives me an idea. Don’t the two books look good together?
Oh, let’s try another shot….
Oooh yeah, baby!
I’m sorry. I’m sorry! I couldn’t help playing at happy bookshelves with them. Just wait until book 3 joins them. (And book 4… and book 5…)
Work it, baby, work it…
Awesome. Not long to go now!
Launch day is 7 February, and I’ll be having the most rocking launch yet. Literally, really rocking!
Watch this space for more news and thank you for joining me.
I declare the manic season open!
Oh yes, this is going to be my four weeks of madness ahead of the launch of Sophie’s Run, and I am very excited about it all. Here’s a little sneak peek at what will be happening, and I’ll bring you posts with updates as I go along, of course.
First of all, let me remind you what Book 2 is all about; here’s the blurb:
Her famous star remains her rock while life takes her on a little detour…
Who says that the road towards true love is straight and even? Sophie is certainly discovering that it is anything but.
So she has finally found the man of her dreams! Well… she knows who he is, even though she hasn’t actually quite met him yet. But she misses her opportunity, and then her life goes crazy. Rock star and ex-fiancé, Dan, keeps getting in the way of her new romance—even if he is just trying to be helpful. A fire, an impromptu mini-trip with Dan, and a dreaded wedding later, Sophie is still struggling to meet the love of her life. Then, just as she is getting it together with her perfect man, best friend Rachel commits an act of unspeakable betrayal.
Sophie has had enough. Confused and distraught, she decides that it is time for radical change. Surprising herself and shocking her friends, she embarks on a secret journey eventually gets her life back on track.
Where is Sophie’s Run now?
Right at this very moment, Sophie’s Run is at the printer. Squeee! I’m hoping to get my trembling fingers on paper back copies of my second book in the next two to three weeks, and you’ll be the first to know when they get here!
In addition, the book is also being formatted for e-publishing in all the various formats so we will be all singing-and-dancing on pub day. (Pub day being 7 February 2013, in case I hadn’t mentioned the date lately).
What kind of launch party will there be for Sophie’s Run?
A fabulous one, to put it simply! Plans are afoot to launch this baby live on air over at Siren 107.3 FM with Alex Lewczuk and various Special Guests on the eve of publication, 6 February, from 5pm to 7pm. Let me hear you say, Hell Yeah! More details to follow when I have the line-up complete.
In addition, I’ll also be hosting a lightning-signing event at Welton library at 10 a.m. on 7 February, so if you’re in the area, drop by! You can visit my blog all through the day of 7 February to take part in the party. And if that’s not enough, I’ll also be hosting a Facebook party so that absolutely everybody can take part!
Will you be taking Sophie’s Run on tour?
Why, of course! And, more importantly, I’ll be taking YOU with me ~ on a tour of geographic and culinary discovery, just like a rock star. The schedule is nearly finalized, 90 per cent of the blog posts have been written, and I will post more details right here on this blog very soon, watch this space.
And of course, while I’m getting this all organized, I also have a duty to Sophie and Dan to finish their story, so I’m typing away at Book 3, Sophie’s Encore. #norestforthewicked, right? It’s gonna be awesome!