Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Liar Society Blog Tour of Awesome- Evolution

You Say You Want Evolution...

The version of Liar Society that we queried with was 55,000 words. The published book is 78,000 words. To say that the book has evolved as we edited would be a HUGE understatement.

When we had our first conversation with our agent about the book she told us the book needed work. She had a few ideas about how we could improve the story we were trying to tell. We took her advice to heart and never looked back. After a couple of months of heavy revision we were ready to go out on sub. The book was right around 75,000 words and we were happy with the way we developed the characters and the plot.

And editors liked the book. A few liked it enough to suggest further revisions. So we revised again. We strengthened our central mystery. We got rid of these convenient little magic heart pills that appeared midway through the book. We gave Kate more of an edge, tried to make her grief more immediate. This version of the manuscript clocked in at 85,000 words.

And Sourcebooks bought that book. The fell in love with Kate and her secrets and her snooty school. And then of course we revised some more feedback. The book was too long. We had to cut. So we shaved off about 10,000 words to make things move faster in the beginning. And then we got a new editor, with some truly amazing ideas about Kate and the gang. That's when we added 8,000 NEW words. But they were good words. Words that strengthened our characters and made the book stronger. At least that's what we keep telling ourselves.

So yeah, for us: 55,000 words + 20,000 words + 10,000 words - 15,000 words + 8,000 DIFFERENT words = a fully evolved manuscript. Makes our heads hurt just thinking about it.

Psst...we have a secret. Click here, hit the Pemberly Brown Plaque. The password is CREST.

And if you want to enter The Liar Society Blog Tour of Awesome contest, and really, who wouldn't want to enter!?! There's a $100 Amazon gift card up for grabs! Just click here and enter the super secret password, CREST, for an entry. Remember you can enter one time for each stop on our blog tour, so be sure to click here and see where else we're visiting this month to maximize your chances of winning.

Audi, Vide, Tace,


Laura Pauling said...

That's so cool. I'd read somewhere that what you queried was around 55k words but holding the book I said, no way. Now I know why.

Tere Kirkland said...

Thanks for the deets, ladies, I love to hear stuff like that. Definitely makes me feel better about my own stuff. ;)

PS, The contest idea with the plaque? Inspired!

Hardygirl said...

Ha! It almost sounds like yo-yo dieting until you finally settle in at your natural weight.

Great stuff!!!


storyqueen said...

I love reading stuff like this! (I'm not the only one who goes up and down on word count.)

And the Blog Tour Super Secret Password thing is a great idea.


Megan K. Bickel said...

Every writer out there should read this post and understand that the road to publication takes lots of work and revision! Great post!

Carla said...

I agree with Megan--it is so very encouraging to read this experience. Thanks for sharing!

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

Wow, I had no idea it started out at 55,000 and LiLa had to add words. I always thought it went the other way.

I just started reading Liar Society and I'm loving it!

Great interview, Corey!