On Friday night I participated in the second installment of The Book Loft Literati Prose & Poetry Extravaganza. This is a monthly open-mic of sorts dedicated to local authors, readers & listeners. The interesting thing about open forums such as this, is that they draw a very diverse group of people. There were over two dozen such characters at this last Extravaganza including: four authors who participated in NaNoWriMo, screenplay writers, poets, one fellow who read from a cheesy Elvis-merchandise mailer & an eccentric guy who shared with us the glories of Metatron.
It is always great to be surrounded by others who share your struggles, hope and dreams. These gatherings are perfect for inspiration, feedback and sheer entertainment value. I was inspired by a fellow NaNoWriMo participant to format my manuscript in a two-column rendition that mimics the actual printed page. Seeing the words in that manner helped me to visualize my random string of words as though they were an actual book. Then, once it was in that format, I discovered other structural changes I needed to make: section dividers, chapter headings, margin adjustments. I was quite surprised at how simply switching the look of the layout spurred me on to tweak other elements.
So, I delayed content editing to work on the structure. And that reworking has actually helped me to think of my manuscript from the reader’s point-of-view.
The editing continues. While the structural changes came as a welcomed distraction, I am resisting the urge to research and download photos of the all-powerful Metatron.