Evelyn Chartres Author

The Grand is Out! Time to Celebrate?

Even things that go bump in the night need a place to unwind

The Grand is officially out and available on multiple platforms, formats and even in print! From Amazon to Smashwords the eBook is freely available for your delight. So time to celebrate? At least get to enjoy the doughnut!

The Grand shown in multiple formats, including print

Now for a little something about the Grand.

Nestled atop a cliff overlooking a cursed valley and surrounded by foreboding mountains you will find The Grand. At this ritzy French palatial-style hotel where things tend to go terribly wrong for some. This hotel is not only for the rich and famous but a favoured destination for things that go bump in the night.

Available free on:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
Indigo
Kobo
Smashwords
Scribd

Available in print on:
CreateSpace
Amazon.com

The Grand is a collection of Gothic horror stories that revolve around a town prosecutor who accidentally discovers a series of grizzly case files. Individual stories incorporate supernatural themes based in the Roaring Twenties to create a rich historical, linguistic and cultural backdrop.

Centred on victims of the Grand, each story brings a different point of view related to the hotel, their staff and esteemed guests.

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The End of the Fourteenth Cycle

Even Things That Go Bump in the Night Need a Place to Unwind

I have completed my fourteenth review of the Grand. This review resulted in a 42% decrease in corrections when compared to the thirteenth cycle. Ethereal Nights had the most substantial drop of 88%, while Penny Dreadful increased by the 400%. Overall, there were 45 corrections which averages 3 changes per chapter.

About half the chapters saw a drop in changes during this cycle. Of note, One Flight Over averaged of 4,452 words between corrections. Here is a summary for this cycle:

  • There was a 42% drop in corrections when compared to revision thirteen;
  • 45 modifications for the entire work;
  • 3 modifications per chapter;
  • Ethereal Nights had the most substantial drop at 88%;
  • Penny Dreadful increased by 400%; and
  • One Flight Over averaged 4,452 words between corrections.

These revision took far less time than revisions prior to seven and for the following reasons:

  • It takes far less time to run through the material;
  • There are far fewer errors to find with an average of 1,951 words between corrections. This improves on the 1,209 words per change seen in revision twelve and is the first above a thousand; and
  • Changes implemented are minor in scope.

This is effectively makes this revision my last. I have handed the work over to a copy editor and will include those changes in what would be officially known as the fifteenth revision. Also, since revision zero was my first revision the grand total would be sixteen total revisions to get this novel ready!

The End of the Thirteenth Cycle

Even Things That Go Bump in the Night Need a Place to Unwind

I have completed my thirteenth review of the Grand. This review resulted in a 15% decrease in corrections when compared to the twelfth cycle. Journey Through the River of Belief had the most substantial drop of 50%, while Old Soul increased by the same amount. Overall, there were 77 corrections which averages 5 changes per chapter.

About half the chapters saw a drop in changes during this cycle. Of note Penny Dreadful averaged of 4,292 words between corrections. Here is a summary for this cycle:

  • There was a 15% drop in corrections when compared to revision twelve;
  • 77 modifications for the entire work;
  • 5 modifications per chapter;
  • Journey Through the River of Belief had the most substantial drop at 50%;
  • Old Soul increased by 50%; and
  • Penny Dreadful averaged 4,292 words between corrections.

These revision took far less time than revisions prior to seven and for the following reasons:

  • It takes far less time to run through the material;
  • There are far fewer errors to find with an average of 1,209 words between corrections. This improves on the 819 words per change seen in revision twelve and is the first above a thousand; and
  • Changes implemented are minor in scope.

I expect to keep pushing through these revisions until the total amount of corrections drop well below 50 for the manuscript. So as it stands, I expect there is one revision left.

On the Subject of Names

Finding a good name has been the bane of authors and expectant parents alike.  For centuries we have struggled to come up with names that fits our characters and sets them apart from our other creations.

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Would Jane Doe work as a name for this young lady?

It is my belief that stories set in the future names have no limits. How cold anyone fathom naming trends fifty years from now? How about a thousand? A good example of this phenomenon can be drawn from history. During the 1920s these were the most popular names for girls in the United States.

  • Mary
  • Dorothy
  • Helen
  • Betty
  • Margaret
  • Ruth
  • Virginia
  • Doris
  • Mildred
  • Frances

Fifty years later these were the most popular names in the United States.

  • Jennifer
  • Amy 
  • Melissa
  • Michelle 
  • Kimberly
  • Lisa
  • Angela
  • Heather
  • Stephanie
  • Nicole 

Who could have foreseen such a shift in names over a half-a-century? Mind you there is a reason why names from the 1970s are more mainstream now. Those names belong to people in their 30s to 40s which are now mothers, teachers and even celebrities.

Still we look for inspiration when it comes to finding names. We desire some sort of guide which will shine the way. Fortunately, when it comes to historical names we have the benefit of foresight.

Most countries have records spanning centuries, these also provide an invaluable source of names. The trick is to avoid using names from the decade in which the story is based. Instead, we have to rely on names from an earlier period.

For example, a forty-year old character set during the Roaring Twenties would have been born in the 1880s. Knowing this, the name Dorothy may not be accurate for someone born in that era.

For North America, a good source of names is the Social Security Administration‘s website and records.  To find names, select the decade you wish (starting from 1880) and look at the top 100 names for the period.  Next, simply scroll through the names and find one that strikes your fancy.

As for family names there are a myriad of sites which carry that information as well.  I found a site which contains the 1000 most common family names in the United States.  Again, use such sites to narrow down your selection and make it historically accurate.

That is how I came up with names like:

  • Ida Bell
  • Elmer Bell
  • Eleanor Green
  • Molly Webster
  • Thelma Walker
  • Mavis Johnson
  • Eugene White
  • Cecil Clark
  • Lewis Hall

Some of these names are clearly dated but are oddly familiar. Hence these are the names that may be associated with a  grandparent or even a great-grandparent. They feel old and dated, hence they feel authentic for someone who lived during the Roaring Twenties.

To find names which are modern, the same resources can be applied.  Just dial in the appropriate decade to work from and you are done.