I’m publishing, because I’m always publishing. Once a month, a novella or a short comes out in my name.
And because I write a series, I am always on the look out for new readers. It’s imperative to me that people who don’t know the series can pick up any volume and follow that story. Anything important to that story must be explained in that story.
Well, I got a crit last night, brand new reader. She read the fifth Monsters of Pittsburgh, the one that I have to ready in three weeks. And she liked it overall, but some of things she felt needed work…
Clarifying that the four main characters live in a house together earlier in the story, super easy.
Clarifying that Rick is remembering when he abducted Mina (as opposed to planning an abduction), no problem.
But I’m not sure how to make Matty’s sexual orientation any clearer. I suppose I could hang put a flashing footnote in the e-book that says “GAY!!!!”, but I thought mentioning that he and Dean broke up should make it pretty obvious.
And the ending of the story… yeah, it’s not all neat. This is the fifth story of seven in the second series, and the first time they meet the antagonists face to face (That they know of. Careful readers will see familiar faces scattered through earlier stories in the series.). And yes, the bad guys get away.
And there was also some confusion on what was going on with Rick and Mina…
So right now, three weeks before I need to get this thing in, I’m worried. Yes, I contacted the critiquer to talk and see where the break downs are. What scene was ambiguous, what lines of dialogue were unclear?
The worry still kept me up until two in the morning. Is it a huge deal if one story out of the 21 shorts and novellas is a transitional story that doesn’t totally stand alone… meh, probably not.
At least, I hope so.