Wednesday 26 November 2014

Updated: "Steal from the Devil" Second Edition

While writing List of the Dead, I learned a few things about writing fiction which were all news to me. They are little twiddly bits which don't typically get taught at school, and which are generally only of interest to editors. But every one of them is something which works to improve the structure and flow of text. Some are typographic (like proper use of the em-dash), some are to do with breaking and closing dialogue, and so on.

So I have gone back over Steal from the Devil with a fine-toothed comb, and applied what I have learned. The difference — I think — is subtle but effective.

While I was at it, I also weeded out some split infinitives. I say 'some'... turns out that when I looked for them specifically, there were a lot. A few sentences and bits of dialogue have been restructured for clarity.

Plot is not affected, and perhaps the only really significant change is in the first chapter. Because a minority of readers found it 'choppy' and 'disjointed' (real words from real reviews), I have de-chopped and re-jointed it. The Hammer's emergence from the wormhole now runs straight into the passage which introduces Captain Aker Santani, and the passage in which we see Caden's dream now runs directly into him waking up and contacting Rendir Throam.

All in all, I think it's a much better read. Had I not rushed so much to get it out last December it is probably the text I would have ended up with.

The paperback has been updated to the second edition, and new Kindle customers will get it automatically since it's now live on the Kindle store. Existing customers on Kindle need to visit their "Manage your Content and Devices" page on Amazon to get the updated file (it's easy).

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