Not the story within the pages, but the story outside the pages.
Why did the writer feel compelled to tell the story?
How many hours did the story take to write, rewrite, re-rewrite, revise revise revise revise revise revise?
And how many elements of a story change from the time the writer writes the first words that come to his/her mind and the moment it is “done”? Is a story ever really finished?
Every Thursday, I’ll be sharing something about the making-of A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER – either on this blog or in my newsletter (don’t hesitate to sign-up :)) until its release on July 30th. Next week, in my newsletter, I’ll not only reveal the cover of A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER, I’ll also explain its making-of (I designed it and I’m so excited about it 🙂
And today, I’m going to start with the first 250 words. Yesterday, I finished revising and editing and re-reading the entire novella and sent it to my copy editor. Then, I thought: “Hmmm, how much did it change from one of the first drafts and this almost-finished version?” It did change quite a bit.
- I drafted and rewrote some parts and revised and revised
- and then it went off to a first round of beta readers (in this case the lovely and talented Riley Edgewood)
- I read her comments and suggestions and revised and revised and re-read
- and then sent if off to my second round of beta readers (in this case the lovely and talented Alison Miller).
- I read her comments and suggestions and then revised and revised and re-read.
- And sent it off to my copy-editor –> I am at this stage 🙂
And below you’ll see the differences between then and now. All the track changes in purple are words/sentences I either added or deleted.
The “almost final” version of the first 250 words (not yet copy-edited):
The pop music blasts from the speakers so loudly that it resonates within me. I jump once, twice, three times, with my fist in the air and then my hips move to the pounding rhythm.
The mirrors on the wall aren’t used to seeing me dance like this. I usually dance to Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, Minkus. Not to Madonna.
I tilt my head to the side. I don’t want to be rehearsing the movements from any ballet choreographies, but I should. I rise on my toes into a relevé.
I don’t want to be Emilia Moretti—sixteen-year-old ballerina who always tries to perfect each single movement to the point of obsession. I lower, bending my knees over my feet, into a plié.
I don’t want to be the girl, who swears she doesn’t care about being adopted but who has been trying to find her birth parents.
I stand on my toes again.
I don’t want to dwell on the fact that I have the saddest crush on Nick—the best dancer at the School of Performing Arts and my brother’s best friend.
I want to let go and dance.
I close my eyes and raise my hands, moving my lips and making up words as I sing off key. I leap from the ground. My legs form a grand jeté that would have me thrown out of the School of Performing Arts: my front leg is not entirely straight, and I’m definitely not high enough in the air. But I don’t care.
(I am sharing exclusive excerpts in my Facebook group: Elodie’s Cozy Nook, hope to see you there 🙂
Tell me, what is your writing process?
Or do you have any questions for me about the making-of A SUMMER LIKE NO OTHER?
She’s his best friend’s little sister. He’s the biggest player of them all. They shouldn’t be together. But this summer’s just too tempting.
Sixteen-year-old Emilia Moretti’s goal for the summer is simple: forget her brother’s best friend—Nick Grawsky—ever existed. It should be easy: He’s spending his summer in the Hamptons, adding girls in tiny bikinis to his list of broken hearts. Guarantee he won’t be telling them they’re like his little sisters. This summer, Emilia won’t stay awake at night thinking about him. She’ll need flawless ballet movements to have a shot at next year’s showcase, and she’s finally ready to search for her birth parents. But when Nick decides to stay in the city, Emilia’s resolve disappears in a pirouette. Maybe it’s the spin they needed to be together. As long as she doesn’t get stuck believing in happily ever after…
Nick is tired of pretending to be the happy, let’s-have-fun guy. His father wants him to change his career from professional dancer to…lawyer. He needs to put all of his focus on dancing to prove to Daddy Dearest he’s good enough to make it big. And he may have a case of the bluest balls in history courtesy of Emilia. She’s off-limits: The bro code with Roberto even forbids the dirty thoughts he has about her. Besides, he’s not boyfriend material. He only has time for flings, for girls who don’t expect much, for girls he doesn’t want to kiss goodnight. He knows he should resist her, but he’s not sure he wants to…
At least for this summer.
It’s going to be a summer like no other.