Darlene Franklin — Author Spotlight
Posted by historythrutheages
Today I’m happy to welcome author Darlene Franklin as she shares about her writing process.
I just received back an edit. Her comments? It was confusing. Disjointed.
Sigh. Make no mistake about it. Writing is just plain hard work!
Even worse—writing and editing is only half of the process.
The first part–brainstorming, planning, dreaming—is the most fun. I love coming up with story ideas, and have more than I can write in a lifetime.
The last part– marketing, marketing, and more marketing—is time consuming. Although sometimes it’s easier to talk about what I’ve written than to write it.
But oh, the butt-glue, stick-to-it-tiveness that writing, the meat of sandwhich requires. Realistic daily goals and short measured increments are my key to getting it done. I go from blank page to publication-ready mss in four steps:
1. Writing: I write straight through, no edits, no research. I leave question marks or write a note about what to research later. If I’m struggling for the right image, I leave it for later. I take notes of what needs to be revised earlier in the manuscript. I keep a separate file for relevant websites, character names, descriptions, and so forth, to use for consistency.
I set the timer for 15 minutes and between write 150 and 300 words. I plan on 800-1600 words per day on any given projects. Any more than that, and my writing tank seems to empty. It doesn’t sound like much, but I’ve written 8 novellas, 60 devotions, and numerous articles since January. My last project took 23 hours to write.
2. First Edits: When I began writing, I ran every chapter through several edits a chapter at a time. That went by the way side as I began publishing frequently. Next I used a list of weasel word to comb through my manuscript. Over time I was able to make substantive edits in a single run through.
That single edit takes at least 2/3rds as much time as the original writing. The mss that took 23 hours to write took 16.75 hours to edit.
I also edit to make the POV consistent, meaning and setting plain, the background filled in until it’s as clear to the reader as it is to me. I write my first draft about 10% longer than the requested mss length, because I cut a lot during editing. When I’m done, I sent it to my editor (either private paid or the publisher).
3. Final Edits: When I get my manuscript back, I go through her comments. I try not to debate with her comments and instead look for the reason she reacted that way. This takes a lot less time than either step one or two, but 9.75 still takes me most of a work week (2 hours a day).
Since I don’t seem to have a good eye for typos, I send it on to a proofreader.
After that, I send the mss to my publisher and they put publication into motion.
It’s important to know your own weaknesses (and strengths) and work with them.
— What is your current work in progress?
Several things. I’m working on final edits for the book to be published on October 1st, Her Rocky Mountain Highness. In a story dedicated to John Denver on the twentieth anniversary of his death, I’ve written a deposed prince and the tourist guide who introduces him to Colorado.
I’ve just started on a story for a Harvey Girls collection. In researching the history of the Harvey Houses along the Santa Fe Railroad, I discovered that Charles Lindbergh built the hub of his Transcontinental Air Transport business in Waynoka, Oklahoma. The expensive air-and-rail trip trip across the country (an amazing 2 days!) failed in the stock market crash, but a new industry was born. The book is titled All Roads Lead Home.
I’m also doing background research for a book on prayer which I will begin writing in October.
— What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
I’ve become a huge fan of adult coloring books! Here’s a couple I’ve done.
— What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
Lately it’s my health. I have plenty of time, but I don’t feel all that well, either in pain or with a foggy mind. I just try to stay focused and work when I can, allow myself to be slow (as frustrating as it can be!) and to take more breaks.
ABOUT THE BOOK: The Christmas Child
A year ago scandal ruined the annual Nanepaushat Cotton Mill Christmas Masquerade—the owner’s son tarried with a mill worker and she left, shamed and pregnant.
Tragedy strikes this year when the same son dies in a tragic accident. Can supervisor Preston Marshall and the shunned woman’s cousin redeem the flailing Masquerade and rescue the Christmas child? How will they overcome the difference in their positions?
Check out Christmas Child to read this imaginative retelling of Herod’s massacre of the innocents of Bethlehem.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Darlene Franklin
Best-selling hybrid author Darlene Franklin’s greatest claim to fame is that she writes full-time from a nursing home. Mermaid Song is her fiftieth unique title! She’s also contributed to more than twenty nonfiction titles. Her column, “The View Through my Door,” appears in five monthly venues. Other recent titles are Wilderness Weddings and Opposites Attract. You can find her online at: Website and blog, Facebook, Amazon author page
Links: Website and blog
About historythrutheagesI write stories of His Story Through The Ages that offer tales of hope and redemption.
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