Jasmine and Quality
Those of you that know me, know that perfectionist is probably not a term that fits me. I wish it was but sometimes excitement will overtake me and I will drive for the goal when perhaps it would be better to take a little more time to improve the product. This happened with Jasmine.
Once I got over my shyness and insecurity about being an author, I wanted to show everyone what I was creating. There were a chosen few that heard from me constantly as I completed chapter after chapter. "What did you think?" I could hardly contain my excitement as I shared the raw writing, not taking the time to refine the pros before sharing. "Is there too much sex?" Needing feedback from my "customers" as I let the ideas, and the story flow from my imagination.
I can remember the joy I felt when I typed "The End" on that last page. I celebrated and instantly wanted to get Jasmine out onto the shelves. I knew that the world awaited her story. A story of mature love, not youthful love. A story that showed just how timeless romance is. Romance is not only for the adolescent, not just for the young adults, and not for the woman raising children. It was for everyone. It was something that not only could bloom but flourish as we aged. I love romance and find it disappointing if not offensive when young people think that romance and sex is somehow dead when you pass into your 40s, 50s, 60s or any arbitrary milestone someone places out there.
Wow see how easy it is for me to get off on a tangent.
I received a 2 star review of Jasmine. I was not only bothered by it, but once I examined the story with a fresh set of eyes, I agreed with it. Oh the story was a good one and upon careful reading of the reviewer's comments, saw that her comments were dealing with the quality of the writing.
My customer was not pleased with the product she received. I could not get this out of my head. I had put out a product that, not only could have been better, but needed to be better.
Well I embarked on another major edit of the book. I employed a new set of resources and tools which allowed a fresh look at the manuscript.
In the end I found more than 1,500 errors in the book.90% were related to punctuation, but there were more than 30 tense errors. There were word usage errors, and a variety of other errors. I was horrified. The punctuation errors did not disturb me so much, but the tense and word usage errors were awful.
It is amazing what you brain does when you read a story. I had read the story 9 times looking for errors. I read it, out loud, twice in an effort to find errors. I enlisted the help of other and they read the story, feeding back the errors that they found. It was amazing how our brains fix the errors, automatically, as we read. I didn't find the errors until I looked at the story, not as a story, but as a collection of sentences. My friend went through the story this way. I also employed a software program which did the same thing. We found the errors and fixed them.
Thursday I placed the new version up onto Amazon for the Kindle. The printed version is under review by my printer and should be available on Monday. The Nook version will be available on May 5th (I have a contract with Amazon for exclusive rights that will expire then).
Those of you who have Kindles will have an opportunity to download the new version for free next week. I will post the dates when I get them firmed up.
Jasmine is, once again, something I am proud to offer to my customers. I hope you all enjoy it.