I’ve worked with Jessica for content editing on four books now. I adore working with her. She has this way of directing without dictating, of suggesting without insisting. She makes me think about things in a different way. When I first get her reports, I take a deep breath and then dive right in. I know she’s going to make me work hard, but at the end of it, I’ll have a much stronger story. I love how she doesn’t tell me the answer. She simply asks questions, which sets my brain whirring. I get a real buzz out of working through a manuscript I’ve had back from Jessica.
With Sarah, it’s a different relationship, but no less important. Sarah gets me. I knew I’d found my perfect line editor when I worked with her on my first book, Winning Ace. She makes my words sing. I love how she’ll pick out examples from my manuscript where I might have a dangling modifier or I’ve not quite hit the mark on a grammar rule. I look at Sarah’s reports and suggestions not just as a way of turning my manuscript from good to great, but also as a learning opportunity so that next time, I will turn in a cleaner piece of work.
What made you choose Red Adept Editing?
An author friend of mine had put together a post on Facebook with all her recommendations from cover design to domain hosts to editing. I think there were nine or ten different editing options. I went through each one. I looked at the websites, I read the testimonials, and for me, Red Adept stood out. They came across as extremely professional with a reasonable pricing structure that meant you could choose the best package for your needs.
As soon as I went through my first set of edits on my very first book, I knew I’d found a company I’d be sticking with for the long haul. I consider myself extremely lucky to have hit gold on the first attempt. Not every author is so lucky.
What inspired you to start a writing career?
I’ve always had an obsession with books and reading. Over the years, I’ve dabbled with writing, but nothing overly serious. Then about six years ago, a story popped into my head, and it wouldn’t let go. I wrote a long and rambling manuscript (I think it was 120 thousand words or thereabouts) and thought I was done. Little did I know that was only the beginning. After working with a mentor for four years, I felt ready to consider publishing, but even then, it took me another year or so to pluck up the courage to put my work out there. I’m so glad I did.
Do you have a favorite place or time of day to write?
I write in my study. It’s my own personal space where I can close the door and concentrate. I can scrawl notes on my whiteboard, leave Post-it notes all around, and have production schedules pasted to the wall without feeling like I’m encroaching on the rest of the house.
In terms of time, I like to write in the daytime, but because I work full time as well as write, I’ve had to train my brain to accept writing in the evenings, although at weekends, I do switch back to daytime. I am usually in my study for seven or eight hours on the weekend days.
Do you like to plan before you write? Or do you prefer to start and see where the story goes?
I have a loose idea of who my main characters are and what their goals and motivations may be. But after that, I sit down and write. My characters constantly surprise me, taking me in directions I wouldn’t have gone if I’d stuck rigidly to a plan. I’ve tried to outline, but it doesn’t work for me. There is no right way to write, apart from the right way for you.
Getting emails from readers telling me how much they enjoyed my books or how I’d made them cry, laugh, or miss their lunch (!). I find it so rewarding that my words have drawn out so much emotion in another person.
You have some great covers. Who does your cover work?
I’m very lucky to work with an award-winning cover artist Karri Klawiter at https://www.artbykarri.com. She’s a very talented designer. She nails what I’m looking for very quickly. Her first attempts are usually 95% of the way there. A couple of tweaks, and we’re done. And she’s so easy to work with (such an important quality).
How do you drink your coffee?
Hot and plentiful! 🙂
What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever been given?
Write a story that you yourself would want to read over and over, because believe me, you are going to be spending a huge amount of time with that story and those characters.
Where can readers find you?
Amazon profile page: https://www.amazon.com/Tracie-Delaney