Echo Chamber Heist: Full Manuscript Read Through
December 13, 2015 by David T. Allen
Last month, I put Echo Chamber Heist away for a few weeks so I could re-read it with fresh eyes. I didn’t get the whole way through, as holidays, work, a two-week uber cold, and a trip to Japan halted my progress. Still, I read a fair amount, and now can work through the most important edits with Leslie.
The first step was to put Echo Chamber Heist on my Nook. I do most of my reading on an e-reader, so this makes the manuscript feel complete, which means my expectations are higher than when I read on my computer. I’m more apt to enjoy the parts that are enjoyable and dislike the parts that don’t work. In short, I treat it like a book that I just purchased.
Another advantage to reading on my Nook is it’s difficult to take and find notes. This forces me to ignore small errors and only mark what’s important. My line-editing instincts kick in when I read on paper or the computer, which puts distance between the story and I. Those line edits are a waste of time if major portions need to be reworked.
The best way to read on the Nook is as an EPUB file. PDFs get formatted weird and block me from taking notes. So I opened the manuscript in Microsoft Word, went to Save As, and saved it as Web Page, Filtered (.htm;.html).
I then imported it into Sigil, saved it as an EPUB, and stored it on my Nook.
When doing a full read, it helps to look for specific things. This read was focused on:
- What’s boring
- Where are the plot holes
- What dialog is weird, stilted, or unrealistic
- How can we put Raquel into more amusing, compromising situations
- Where can we add more steampunk elements
In our next read through, we’ll focus on how to add more of our fantasy world’s religious elements to the story.