This week I received news that my publisher, Lida Quillen of Twilight Times Books and the Paladin Timeless Imprint, is hoping to schedule Tremolo: cry of the loon, the prequel to Double Forte', for printing in late November. This will be the third Gus LeGarde book in print, from a current total of nine. Lida's been juggling numerous successful books and events all summer, working hard to grow her top notch independent press. It has earned a wonderful reputation in the community. Here's a link to her current newsletter, if you'd like to take a look.
The search for a "paint and brush" artist for the cover hasn't materialized, for various reasons. So, Lida allowed me to take another crack at the cover. Nothing is final yet, but this is one version. It may end up getting scrapped or changed, but I thought I'd share it anyway. I'm always interested in the feedback you folks provide, so feel free to weigh in with your own opinions!
Originally I had some loon and/or rowboat images in the cover, but so far they haven't seemed right. Too cluttered. The image I'm striving for is mysterious and eerie - fog on the lake at night. But I'm not sure if it's enough.
What do you think?
In the process of doing this I happened to revisit the manuscript. Guess what happened? What ALWAYS happens.
I choked and panicked.
Too many adverbs. Examples of passive writing. Extra prepositional phrases explaining where my characters are standing or sitting that just plain slow down the story. Too many uses of "up" and "down" that are not necessary. And so on.
I wrote this years ago - in three months, as I usually do. And of course I polished it many times afterwards, coming back to it years after the original penning. But the last time I worked on it was with my editor over a year ago.
Since then, I've learned a great deal. Skills accumulate the more you write and study the craft, the tips and tricks for smoother, more powerful prose add up over time. And now the stuff I write (like Lady Blues, which I just finished, or For Keeps, which I'm halfway through), is so much stronger than the earlier works.
So - with a bit of trepidation - I asked my publisher if I could have one more "go" at it. She graciously agreed, although it's against her policy at this point in production. I'm being careful to maintain the integrity of the manuscript, but feel much better as I scour it one more time, cutting the excess and fortifying the weak.
It's not like a fresh rewrite, although that would be ideal. But I have to stop somewhere and realize that each book will be better than the last (in writing quality) and that it's a quandry I'll have to live with for the rest of my career. There are just too many darned stories to get out of my brain to stall and completely rewrite everything all over again. If I gave in to that desire, I'd not only drive myself crazy, but I'd never be done and my readers would be a bit...shall we say... bored?
On top of all this, my poor wife is having some serious health problems, complications with her MS, so I cancelled my booksigning today to be with her. She needs me, and that's more important than anything. Fortunately the event was part of a larger gathering of authors, so my absence won't be cataclysmic.
Next weekend I'm off to Heron Hills Winery for another solo event, and after that, to the Woods Library in Canandaigua. If you'd like to see the events calender, feel free to hop onto my site at http://www.legardemysteries.com/ and click on the events page. I'd love to see you if you're in the area!
Have a wonderful weekend.
Aaron Paul Lazar works as an engineer by day but can be found on weekends in his gardens with his two toddler sidekicks, grandsons Julian and Gordon. His passion lies in writing, where he has created eleven books with characters of depth, color and substance. Lazar entices readers with intricate plots, lush imagery, breathless action, gourmet meals, classical music, bountiful gardens and surprising romantic moments.
Mr. Lazar also writes monthly columns for the Futures Mystery Anthology Magazine, Voice in the Dark newsletter, and The Back Room ezine and has been published often in Absolute Write. He lives in Upstate NY with his extended family. Visit his websites at:
http://www.legardemysteries.com/; http://www.mooremysteries.com/, and his blog at http://www.aaronlazar.blogspot.com/.