Evelyn Chartres Author
Random – Page 2

Visually Comparing the Grand’s Revisions

A visual comparison between revisions for the Man and the Sea, a chapter for the Grand. This particular video demonstrates how the Spiral Development method can apply to the review process of a novel; namely how chapters are refined over time.

This is a follow to my Comparing the Grand’s Revisions post, which goes into why and how this particular chapter was selected for comparison. This video also demonstrates how the amount of changes gradually recede to leave behind a coherent manuscript and that is something any author wants to see!

Direct comparison between Revision 2 and 14

This video is a composite comparison of 12 chapters in all. While there are 14 versions of the chapters, some had no changes to bring forward so there was nothing gained by showing them. For those curious, the above image below denotes the total changes between Revision 2 and Revision 14.

Comparing the Grand’s Revisions

When I wrote the Grand, I made sure to collect statistics on changes and kept a copy of revisions. This enabled me to measure my progress and gauge how things were moving along. I detailed this process before under the post titled Spiral Development for the Literary World.

There was one element I never explored at the time and that was comparing the earliest revision available against the newest. In the back of my mind, I half-expected it show me a document filled with corrections and would find very little original text remaining. What I found was pretty much exactly as I imagined.

To find the ideal candidate, I looked through the amount of changes made per revision and originally found that the Van Helsing Paradox had the highest number. Not a revelation per sey, considering it is also my largest chapter.

Instead, I compared total revisions made against the amount of words and discovered that the Man and the Sea had highest percentage of corrections over it’s lifetime. Since this chapter is also one of the shortest, it also allowed me to show visually how the bulk of the chapter was altered.

For those curious here is a list of the number of changes based on revision:

  • Revision 2 – 62
  • Revision 3 – 30
  • Revision 4 – 17
  • Revision 5 – 12
  • Revision 6 – 4
  • Revision 7 – 3
  • Revision 8 – 2
  • Revision 9 – 1
  • Revision 10 – 3
  • Revision 11 – 2
  • Revision 12 – 1
  • Revision 13 – 1
  • Revision 14 – 1

Overall I found it humbling and fascinating. It allowed me to see how dramatic 12 revisions could be when compared directly!

A Tour on Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine

I had the opportunity to land on les Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Quebec, Canada.  The Magdalen Islands are small chain of islands located north of Prince Edward Island, Canada in the Saint Lawrence Gulf. While my stay was relatively short, I did visit a few museums, smoke house and a cheese maker.

The island is sparsely populated, offers beautiful landscapes, beaches, sea-side views and wind. I posted the above pictures in the hopes that it would inspire someone!

A Drive Around Saint John’s

I have been to Saint Jonh’s, Newfoundland several times in the last decade.  While sites like Signal Hill are iconic, I had seen them before and wanted to venture out beyond the periphery of the city. So, I rented a car and ventured out in areas that would be harder to reach on foot when time is limited.

I took a series of shots that I feel provide a certain amount of inspiration. Since it’s currently Iceberg season, I also took a shot of a few notable specimens that I came across.  For those curious, yes there is still snow and it’s nearly May!

A Review of Bartender Wanted

Bartender Wanted is a historical mystery written by Maureen Anne Jennings; not to be confused with Maureen Jennings the author of the Murdoch Mysteries which launched a popular Canadian show with the same name. This story takes place in the 1980’s New York city, bringing me back to my childhood.

The story itself centres on the staff at My World, a restaurant and bar in Manhattan. Bartender Wanted revolves around Rose Leary, a recently divorced author and former restaurant owner who now tends the bar to make ends meet in between novels. A series of murders ensues and she finds herself in the middle of mystery, bringing her into contact with some of the bar’s patrons, employees and the owners.

Overall, I found this novel to be a quick and pleasant read, although I do not see myself picking up any other books from the series. Maureen Anne Jennings is very careful to work within the limited technology of the day, and brings into focus certain sociopolitical elements that the reader may not have been aware of. The author also does an excellent job of speaking for the protagonist and you get a taste of her thoughts and motivations.

However, I found her interactions with some of the characters to be less than believable. The one exception was her interactions with Jimmy, one of the waiters, although that aspect seems to fizzle out towards the end of the book. This novel also left me with few surprises, there were no cliff hangers or mystery in it for me. I was simply left wondering when Rose would figure it out and how all the loose ends would be tied up.

Overall the story failed to captivate me or keep me hooked until the end. This was not an adrenaline pumped roller coaster ride, instead it was more of a pleasant drive through the country. There was plenty of room for one’s imagination to grow, but little opportunity to get the pulse racing. A shame really, since the ratings on Goodreads really got me thinking I’d be consuming the whole series!