Back from the grave – urr, the cave

Schools are out and summer is here and most are already going on trips, or to the beach, or hiking and camping, enjoying a vacation – to say it better: having fun.

But me? I’ve spent the most part of the past two months inside a cave… my editing cave.

Edits and revisions have never gone slower for me. I decided early on last month to change my tactic, which was to attack my manuscript top to bottom over and over. Seeing I wasn’t doing much progress with that approach, I decided to simply create a new file. Then, on to the manuscript, select and cut the first chapter, paste it on the new file. Then edit and revise that chapter to an inch of its life. What I did, exactly, was this:

1-Read and revise whatever I felt didn’t sound write.

2- Correct all the spelling and grammar.

3- Delete anything extra that wasn’t adding to the sentence – that, a, just, the -ly words and so on.

4- Rewrite sentences that could be shortened.

5- Read the whole thing until there was nothing left to add, delete or change.

6- Take my mind off the story by reading something else – so I could start in the morning fresh.


Once done with that chapter, I’d head back to the manuscript, select the next chapter, cut and paste it on that new file. Rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat…

My RISD (Revisionitis Intolerance Syndrome Disorder) is still going strong, but I’m managing it. So far, I’ve done more than half of the manuscript, about 65k words from 110k+ yes, I’m still on round 1.


Still, as you can imagine from #6 in that list, I’ve read quite a number of books this past 7 weeks, and here’s a list, in no particular order:

My reviews can be read on goodreads here:

  • Muse of nightmares (Strange the dreamer #2) by Laney Taylor


Well, I admit I put off reading this one so long because of the way that book one ended – I mean, that ending? I could practically write book 2 from it. But, I needed to read something that wouldn’t give my tortured brain shock waves, so I picked this one (after all, didn’t I already know what was going to happen?) Boy was I wrong.

Well, not entirely wrong, mind you, this book started exactly the way I’d thought it would. Had I not been in the mood for this sort of predictability, I’d have put it down on the first few pages.

But then things started evolving, and shock and shock, it wasn’t what I was expecting, and I ended up at the edge, wondering when that twist was going to happen and all my premonitions would come true. But it didn’t and I ended up enjoying this one more than the first, save for one little thing – SPOILER AHEAD! And yeah, I didn’t like that Sarai remained as she was in the end, but there was enough doubt thrown at the end to make one believe there was hope for her still.


  • Nothing But Trouble (Malibu University #1) by P. Dangelico


Nothing really special about this one, but that’s because I’ve read so many romance books, this one is just another one. It was a normal good read though, and I have no complain to make.


  • Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik


I read Uprooted by Naomi Novik a while back and enjoyed it very much – especially the length. So when I found this one, I pounced, ready to enjoy another great read. And yes, it was great, but not as great. Maybe it was the thrill of that first book, the knowledge of the danger from start to finish, maybe it was the magic of the world building of the first … Actually, no, there was magic in this one as well, and the words were captivating too. Maybe it was the fact that the reason for the endless winter in this one came too late in the story? Still, all in all, I enjoyed it very much.


  • Diary of a Bad Boy by Meghan Quinn


Very well written, but I don’t like the part where girl falls for the guy who treats girl poorly. There’s no reason for him to be an ass aside from the fact that he’s an ass.

I mean, come on to this side of real life. A guy acts like a jerk? You slap him and walk away, not fall in love. But I actually read this one through to the end – well, I listened to it all the way through, and if I fell asleep on some parts, it was still ok.


  • King of Scars (Nikolai Duology #1) by Leigh Bardugo


Alright, I actually enjoyed this one very much. I’m not a big fan of Bardugo – gasps – but I don’t have anything against her either. I did read the first book in the Grisha, Shadow and bone, and I did like it, but I couldn’t see what all the fuss was about. I started reading the second book there, didn’t feel the mood and let it go for a later time (that still hasn’t come). My second book by this author was Wonder woman, and yes, enjoyed that one too. But I gotta say this one takes the cake. It was really good – and I did recognize a few names from Shadow and bone, enough so that the references made me want to go back and finish the Grishah trilogy? Series? And yes, intend to, sooner than later.


  • Blood of the Earth (Soulwood #1) by Faith Hunter


Did I ever say I was a fan of Jane Yellowrock? I was, and when the last book in the series (#12), was released, I was… sad to read it, knowing there wouldn’t be any other coming.

So when I realized Faith Hunter had started another series in Jane Yellowrock’s world? My first instinct was not to pick it up, knowing it wasn’t going to be as good. Well, it wasn’t as good, but different enough that I ended up enjoying it nonetheless. I already have book 2 in my cue to be read next.

I’m curious about Nell and who she’ll end up with, as well as about Rick – because, and this is probably an unpopular opinion, I wanted him to end up with Jane. So now I’m wondering if Nell and Rick are meant to be?


  • The Culling Trials (Shadowspell academy #1, #2, #3) by Shannon Mayer and F. Breene


This is a 3 book short stories that I read, one after the other. I enjoyed it, but I admit, I don’t like when convenient things happen when the protagonist is facing a difficult situation, and it did here, on all three books. But I like the adventure and obstacles that were thrown on the way, and the story was written for a much younger audience (teens and probably mg) so I took that in consideration. And all three were intriguing enough to keep me going all the way. I think though both authors should have made the three into one full novel.


  • Obsession in death (Naked in death #40) / Devoted in death (Naked in death #41) / Brotherhood in death (Naked in death #42) By JD Rob


Sometimes I have a penchant for police/detective work and JD Rob never fails to deliver. Romance – check. Action – check. Great visualization – check. Humor – check. Dark – check. A little fantasy – check.

Yes, it ticks all the boxes, hence the reason I’ve read 42 books in the series so far.


So that’s that. I see myself doing more of the above for the next month, unless someone manages to fish me out of that cave – by force – to do something else. So, readers – have you read any of those books or any books by those authors?

Authors? Do you have a different way for editing your work?





55 Replies to “Back from the grave – urr, the cave”

  1. Its so strange, I haven’t read any of the books you’ve read 🙂 At least I can say that Ive heard of many of them, and intend to read at least one of them – Spinning Silver, sometime in my reading life..:)
    Sending your more patience to sit through all those revisions. Sounds tedious but kudos to you for keeping at it, nevertheless. I for one will not be complaining when I read the outcome 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!
      I’m a patient person. And determined too. I’ll keep at it until I think it’s done.
      Spinning silver was an enjoyable read. But I’d recommend uprooted first. And keep in mind that both are very, very long books.
      Good luck with your reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Do you ever tire? You seem like the super writer woman with your daunting editing tasks, and then you manage to read and review these books. I wish you all the success, you definitely deserve it.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s a challenge, especially when my daughter is standing beside me demanding candy – which she is doing right now and I’m ignoring her because I’ve already said no three times- and yeah, the books help me relax, so I needed a lot of them. Still do!
      Thanks for the visit!


      1. Ha ha!! Ahhh…. Children. That’s the reason I didn’t have any. So I COULD give them the candy to shut them up!! … And then promptly send them back to their parents. Lol!
        I hope you’re doing well otherwise, my Jinn!! I’ve missed you! I’m trying to re-enter the blogosphere after disappearing into my job!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. They were mostly great. And yes, the method is working so far. I’m dividing the longer chapters, so the chapters aren’t very long.
      Thanks for the visit and have a wonderful day!


  3. I’m the opposite, Jina – I usually have a lower word count and need to beef it up. I tend to be slack on descriptions, so I let my beta tell me where it need more info. Glad to see you back!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My word count is never equal the one on the manuscript either. But that’s because I delete a lot of ‘extras’ then add descriptions as I go. Sometimes I even add/delete entire scenes, depending on what the betas say. Thanks for the visit, it’s great to be back!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I like ‘rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat…’ etc.

    Your system sounds similar to my approach with short stories – one of these days I’m going to try a novel. Good luck with yours. Not that it sounds like you need luck, you’re so clearly on top of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That’s an intensive regime you have, a labour of love in the end, I hope.
    Perhaps you should call it your editing meadow, rather than cave. Breathe the fresh air and maybe that will help the creative process?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love caves, they are great places to explore and for revelations to pour. Lol. Sometimes editing and revisions are like that… very slow.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha, it rhymes. I’m actually claustrophobic. You wouldn’t find me near a cave even if giant dinosaurs were chasing me and that was my only escape.
      Or maybe not.
      Thanks for the visit and have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I feel your pain on editing. Sometimes it’s like pulling teeth. Without painkillers.

    And I liked Spinning Silver, too, although I agree that Uprooted was better. Nice to see that fairy tales are still considered viable by trade publishers. : )

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I am also a big reader. Always perplexed when an author says they don’t read while writing a book of their own. 🤔 I am always reading. Usually two at a time-one fiction and one non-fiction. JD Robb is excellent, really enjoy that series. As for revision, it’s the same for me, tough going this book. One thing Jenny Crusie says is the protagonist should start every scene with a goal. They want something, small or large, and somebody’s blocking them from getting it. End of scene is when they teach their goal (or fail to reach it). If you look at every scene that way, everything flat livens up. Good

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a good theory. I don’t plan my scenes like that. I have the plan for the story in my head – and it may change when I put it down – but aside from that much outline, I leave the story to run as it pleases. I’m a big reader. I think I can safely assume I’m a reader before I’m a writer. That’s one big thing that separates me from all those authors out there – the fact that i never really aspired to be an author. I just woke up one day and decided to write the story I wanted to read. I’ve been writing ever since, but I never gave up the reading.

      Liked by 1 person

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