Friday, 16 November 2007

Rising Fire in at Number One on YWO

Top of the charts on Youwriteon!

I was thrilled this morning to find Rising Fire (revised) had gone straight in at number one on YWO with its first five reviews.

I know I am lucky. Plenty of excellent books on the site never make the top ten, for no very obvious reason. There is always an element of chance in whether you happen to be assigned reviewers who enjoy your work; next week my book may plummet, but meantime it's a nice achievement.

Rising Fire was the first writing I put on YWO, on 22nd November 2006. That version was pretty rough. Full of word echoes, lumps of backstory, tell not show, and POV switches mid-paragraph. I made a lot of changes.

I tried a second version on the site this summer, with a prologue in an attempt to get rid of some of the backstory. Its reception was cool. Finally, my writer friend Norm said he didn't like the prologue, and I removed it. He was right.

Grateful thanks to Youwriteon, and everyone there who has given me useful feedback.


  1. Congratulations. I hope it gets a professional review and a precursor to the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award.

  2. Thanks. I'm still working on it, it's far from finished. Anna's just done me a read through of the start and I've made improvements.

    Revision continues...

  3. Okay, now is the time to tread lightly and assign credits only after consulting with the local voodoo doctor.

    It is great to see your stuff get recognized. Maybe we can get Norm's into contention before the month is over?

    I am now going to request a new assignment. Keep your fingers crossed it is either yours or Norm's.

    Not that I would shade my ratings a bit high for either of you. Honest Plumboz, that's me.

  4. The world looked bright when I posted my story but now it will take some doing indeed to overcome the 23 and 26 ratings from newbies.

    I'm about to chuck it and try with a fresh revision.

  5. Alan, if only...

    Given how excellent your suggestions were for Trav, if you were assigned RF the marks would be unimportant compared to the advice.

  6. Yeah, go Norm.

    Your novel, under whatever its latest title is, should reach the top.

    Perseverance wins the day.

  7. Norm,

    Just don't put chapter headings on any revision. My last reviewer warned me that such things are outdated and I am sure my grade was adjusted accordingly.

    Good thing I'm not in it for the glory.

  8. Are you going to listen to somebody who has never heard of a Mont blanc?

    Good grief, YWO's got another batch of know-it-all newbies.

    I'm keeping my chapter headings and so should you.

  9. The latest version of Death in Green Cathedrals is now loaded on I'm keeping my fingers crossed that it's not newbied to death.

    I think for it to be given high marks by YWO newbies it would have to be short-listed for the Edgar .

  10. I kinda felt bad about the "Thank You" I posted, and I even sent Ted a note asking him to remove it. So far it's still there. But honestly, sometimes people do make the dumbest suggestions. And when they are presented as "ways to make your writing better, 'cause after all, ain't that why we all are here?" it just torques me a tad. Ya know what I mean?

    If meevee had the gumption to list his/her e-mail, I would have sent a note to point out that Mont Blanc is a damn big (by European standards) mountain and yes, Nicholas Gatting did throw it across his office in Brisbane and let him/her work out the logistics.

  11. Is that like Edgar Winter, man?

    "Dave's not here."

    Lexi, it looks like we've taken over your corner o' the web now.

  12. Alan

    About YWO Message Board comments: you can Edit them and pretty much remove everything that you said (given that you edit said comment in the appropriate amount of time and not wait too long).

  13. Yeah, I've done the edit thing, but I think it only gives you about an hour to do so and I posted the snarky "Thanks for the suggestions, you don't mind if I disregard them" note late at night after a sterling day at Ye Olde Shoppe and didn't get the remorse twinge until the next morning.

    Oh well, meevee probably never goes to the MB and I just hope those who have read it understand.

  14. Well, I got my first review 30 minutes after posting.

  15. Always nice to know a lot of thought has gone into the process.

    I hope at least it was a favorable one. Won't know what the numbers are though, so that's always kinda worrisome.

  16. Alan, I loved your meevee comment and so did Anna. It was too amusing to be offensive. You worry too much.

    I get emails from Julia McCutchen on writing, and the latest promoted YWO. So Ted's out there actively attracting newbies.

    A cheering thought...

  17. Me worry too much? God, that's awful. But I don't really know what I can do about it. Except worry maybe.

    Yep, that works.

    One of the first things I thought of when I woke this morning was "I wonder if Lexi is still in top place?"

    Gonna go check now.

  18. Thank you, Alan.

    You saw it too!

    The view from up there is stunning - I can see for miles. But there is one disadvantage I thought of today.

    The only place to go from here is down.

  19. No bad vibes allowed. Keep the spirit soaring.

    Possible interesting/good news from the Ol' West. I have just received an invitation to apply for the Advisory Board of the Arizona Entertainment Hall of Fame, representing the underrepresented literary forum. Was contacted by a longtime radio personality who is currently on the board and who wants to sponsor my application. And it all happened through MySpace, believe it or not. I'll let ya'll know if anything comes of it. I'm sending her a copy of CEGW at her request.

  20. This sounds Interesting and Prestigious.

    What would you have to do? Or perhaps you won't know till it happens.

    I'm glad MySpace is proving useful.

  21. The view among the hoi polloi is stunning as well. They continually stun me.

    Ouch! Watch where you're shovin' fella.

  22. Well, if you're VERY lucky (and I'm not) I may be visiting you plebs sometime in the near future and seeing what it's like down there with the common herd.

    I'll bring my pointy umbrella. And a hatpin.

  23. And matches and torches! They tend to be afraid of fire.

  24. Hi Lexi, Only just been on YWO to upload my new novel opening chapters and was very pleased to see your book is number 1.

    Well done and I hope this is the start of something big for you.

    Best wishes

  25. I know what a Mont Blanc pen is. Do I get a prize?
    Congrats on number one, Lexi. Fingers crossed some effing git like 'angelscribe' doesn't come along and give you straight 1s. And a ton of indescribably useless, mind-numbing suggestions. I see the review you got today was quite tacky. "Good idea, needs work."
    You've been at the top of the YWO mountain before and so have I. This is the part where I tell you not to count chickens - yet.
    When you do get to count 'em, crack eggs all over thhe naysayers' heads.

  26. Thanks, Annie and Fiona.

    Down at number six today. I'm off to hunt for matches and torches.

  27. That reviewer has a strange idea of what teenagers will understand. Does he think they are complete morons?

  28. Yes, HJ, I thought that a bit odd.

    Also, teenagers have to learn new words somewhere; from a novel is a painfree way to do it. One can generally guess the meaning from the context. I don't want to patronize my readers.

    Dammit, I'm still learning new words, and am happy to do so!

  29. You find out the blighter's address and the plastic flamingos are there by sundown!

    Please don't let the drop get you down. At least not for more than an hour or so. You are doing good work and from what can see it gets better all the time and that is what truly counts. More importantly, that is what will get you an agent and a publishing contract.

  30. Ah, thank you Alan! Appreciate the offer.

    Like a boy scout I shall smile and whistle under all difficulties.

    (Hang on, how do they do that? Anyone got a boy scout handy to ask?)

  31. No boy scouts in the immediate vicinity. Couple of Mormon missionaries could be rustled up without too much bother if that would suit.

    Meantime, don't you have a professional review due for another of your pieces? Trav maybe?
    Attract attention to one and the other should tag right along, don't you think?

  32. Trav made it into the Best Sellers by the less glorious twenty-five-days-or-more-in-the-top-ten method. Just scraped in, too.

    You don't get a prof. crit. for that, alas.

    Not sure Mormons whistle.

  33. No crit? That's the poops. But it could mayhaps catch the odd professional eye by virtue of being in the Top Ten?

    I shall endeavor (or endeavour) to snag a passing Mormon and put him to the whistle test.

    Results will be reported as soon as available.

  34. Yes indeed; I am sure it is but a matter of time till literary agents start hovering and pouncing on the YWO elite.

    They'd be there already, but for their well-known aversion to reading anything they don't have to.

    Don't alarm the Mormon. Sneak up gently.

  35. I am literally slapping all available wood silly and whistling myself dizzy and so feel quite comfortable in saying the Rising Fire has Made It!

    Well done.

  36. Encouraging to know you are slapping and puckering, Alan.

    I'm working (furiously) on the adverbs myself.

    Got rid of two this lunch hour.

    Gosh, it's (terribly) hard.