Re Edits and Re- Visions
Books I &II of Over the Hills and Faraway have been re-edited, and it is now the long winded, and the pain-in-the-bum job, of formatting them, ready to upload to SOL, that needs to be done – but I'm gradually working my way through them.
Several factual errors, typo's, errors in grammar and punctuation, have been addressed , as well as removing many 'he saids' 'she saids', as well as explanations in brackets (parentheses). Hopefully this will make the stories a smoother read.
I have always been a bit sniffy of those authors who make changes to their story after receiving adverse reader feedback on some aspects of the story. A writer writes, a reader reads; the latter has the right to make their opinion of the story known to the former; the former has the right to ignore that opinion. I do not intend changing the names of any of the characters in the series Poacher's Progress, although I will take more care in selecting names for future characters.
However I am making alterations to Book III of Over the Hill and Faraway solely on the feedback from one reader.
There are several stereotype, probably unkind, and certainly untrue, portrayals of Germans in some chapters of Book III. As some one born just prior to WWII I had certain prejudices, concerning the German people, inculcated in me. I am not proud to admit to them, and indeed I have gradually rid myself of them. The personality I devised for Dewey Desmond did not have any prejudices concerning Germans, and so those stereotypical /prejudiced comments 'he' made were not true to his character. That was bad writing on my part, and it is something I will be aware of from now on.
I have removed /altered some content from some chapters of the story, not because they gave offence but because the opinions expressed were not those of the character, Dewey Desmond, but were, sub consciously, mine. I doubt if many of you will be aware of the changes, but at least one reader will be, and I thank him for alerting me to my error.
Dewey and I do hold similar views concerning West Ham United Football Club -- and Deborah Harry.
Thank you for your forbearance.
The last chapter of Death and Damnation has now been posted. I would like to thank all those who have downloaded/ voted/written to me, regarding the story.
Major thanks go to my two esteemed editors: Old Rotor head(ORH) and DerykB, who between them have crafted my rough and ready syntax into a readable story.ORH also picked up a glaring historical error before I let it loose on SOL.Thanks also to Zine who gave me help with some of the French bits and bobs, the sort of stuff I never was taught a school!
For those who found my choice of character names distracting or annoying, I apologise. For those who found them amusing or enhancing, or just didn’t notice them, I will be curtailing their use in future. I also apologise to the inhabitants of Ashby de la Zouche, for associating the name of that fine town with the villain of the piece. I hope it did not spoil their enjoyment when reading the story. No one claimed that the titles of plays by Shakespeare, which were scattered through the story, were distracting or annoying. There must be a lesson to be learned there.
There will be a third installment of Jack Greenaway’s adventures, but not for some time. I am taking two months off before doing any more writing. Book IV of Over the Hills and Faraway will be the next story I post ---but at the present I have no idea when.
I will continue check my e mails regularly, and will reply to all. As soon as I have a timetable for posting any future story I will put it out on my blog.
I have had several -- well three actually -- e mails concerning the names of characters in Death and Damnation. I admit to having a somewhat juvenile sense of humour, and realise there are many readers out in SOL land who not share my rather puerile tastes. All I can do is apologise if my character defect spoils the enjoyment of people reading my stuff.
Naming characters is an art in itself, one that I do not possess, so I use already established ‘names’, but not necessarily in the same context that people bearing those names inhabit.
I scatter these names about haphazardly, and sometimes my reader will spot the theme I’m following, and will respond, usually positively but not always. Think of it as Easter Eggs buried in the story; you can concentrate of finding the treats and not bother with the story, or vice versa, or both.
In Duel and Duality I used English place names for most of the officers of the 69th Foot --- some readers on the eastern side of the pond spotted them, but I doubt if many on the western side did. As for those Down Under ….?
I won’t let on as to the theme in Death and Damnation, it might spoil your enjoyment, or it might decide you not to continue reading. However, a nod is as good as wink to a blind horse, as my dear old mum used to say -- and no, I never had a clue what she meant by it either,-- and I will, in future stories, eschew ‘celebrity names‘, as some call them. Of course they were just bog standard names until ‘celebritized’.
In case you are wondering, my other series, Over the Hills and Faraway, is free of themed character names.
Death and Damnation has reached the half-way point of posting, and I’m changing the numbers of chapters I post at a time. The 3 chapters posted today bring one section of the story to a close.
Results so far, for Death and Damnation, in downloads, votes and feedback, are probably slightly down on Duel and Duality at the same stage, but then the current story does not have the advantage of a blurb written by Old Rotor Head! In fact even now Duel and Duality is picking up about 100 downloads a day, on average, which just goes to show what a first class blurb can do for a story. Over the Hills and Faraway has also benefited, with slightly increased daily downloads.
After completing the posting of Death and Damnation my next project will be Book IV of Over the Hills and Faraway.
It has been suggested that Books 1 and 2 of the series might benefit from being re-edited; there are several inaccuracies within the text, and I will admit that plot, and character, development could be improved, as well as the pacing of the story.
I wonder if there is anyone out who would be ready, willing, or able, to take a look at the chapters, with the view of me re-submitting the books after re editing? Possibly, after the updated /re edited Books 1 and 2 are posted, there may be a greater take up of the complete series.
I understand that Laz is going to remove TPA voting from the site. Some authors will bemoan this and others will rejoice---I'm ambivalent. I like to see how well, or not, my story appeals to the readers, but get a bit miffed when I receive a lower than average Technical score. I admit I make the odd typo and punctuation glitch, even though my 2 editors are on the ball and pick up my many errors. However I think that some readers forget that I write in British English, with all our annoying spelling mistakes!
I have just posted the first two chapters of Death and Damnation (DD2), and intend posting two chapters every other day, the story has 22 chapters.
My sincere thanks go to Old Rotor Head and DerykB, who between them have fashioned my mishmash of bad grammar, incorrect punctuation, and general ignorance, into what I hope is an enjoyable story. Thanks also to Zine, who helped me with some French terminology.