Makes ya wanna think.

Charged up about Hel’s Bet

My writing week has been a huge success. I miss my horrible canines but I made tons of progress on rewriting Hel’s Bet. Despite being pretty damned sick I’ve figured out how to get words on the page.

I can write for a couple hours before the sparklers start in my  head and I have to stop. In those hours I’ve been having a blast. My writing is strong.

My writing group Written in Blood gave me a huge boost with enthusiastic critiques of the rewritten first 50 pages of Hel’s Bet. Excuse me for crowing but I just spent 6 months on this rewrite without feedback so hearing that I did a good job was a great relief.

“Doug, this totally rocks. I have plenty of inlines for you, but mostly I just have to say how terribly impressed I am with the way you’ve got Mick’s voice going, the way you’re getting the background information in, and the way you’re keeping the pacing and chronology going.”

“What a rewrite! There’s really not much to do but praise this and say that you completely nailed it. This is awesome, unputdownable stuff. Very polished. Despite having read the whole original book in the last year and remembering much of the story, when I reached the end of this section I was so engrossed that I found myself wishing there was more of the rewrite. You had me totally hooked and wanting more.”

“I think it’s a vast improvement on the previous version, especially the first two scenes, and that you’ve nailed a lot of things right and are successfully engaging the reader’s interest. With some fine-tuning here and there, it should be a killer opening.”

“I thought the first part of this was absolutely fabulous.
The voice is fantastic, Hel is amazing, and Manuel Chin provides the perfect explainer and framework… The first three chapters would have me buying the book.”

“One heck of a rewrite. I’m drawn right into the story from the first line, and Mick is a fun guy who is very likable and easy to root for. The voice is wonderful and the writing is solid.”

A random pic of me being happy

A random pic of me being happy


That recharged my confidence in my writing and in my book.

Now that I’ve got a metric for how much I can write at this low level of energy I’m going to manage my dog-exercising to avoid exhaustion.

If I keep writing at this pace I can finish the rewrite by the end of April. I’ve got a taste again of how fun it is to write and I can’t wait to show the finished draft to agents. I’ve got some wild plot twists to install and some characters to explore. Fun stuff. I’m going to finish this thing and sell it.

Time to pick up the pooches from the kennel. Big reunion!

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