Once More Unto the Breach, Dear Friends...
Our first novel in the Para-Earth Series, is going to get a complete rewrite!
Yes, you are reading that correctly. You're eyes are not playing tricks on you. I know earlier this year I said I was going to try and clean up "The Bridge", but the further I got into reading it, the more I saw just how messed up it had gotten.
But before I go further, a little history lesson.
"The Bridge" was the first book I ever released, so naturally there were a lot of rookie mistakes made in it, which were pointed out to me early on in the reviews (even though those same reviews gave it 4 and 5 stars). But I couldn't ignore the fact that there were problems with my baby. I call it that, because I did all the writing and did not credit my wife for all the help she gave me in developing the story. So I tried going back and fixing the errors only to wind up with mixed results.
A third attempt was made, which still seemed plagued with problems. Finally, a few years ago, my editor and I went back to the beginning together and went cover to cover fixing everything wrong we could find. At that point, I also added Helen's name onto the cover to give her the proper credit she deserved because she too had a hand in the revision. With this new 'clean' copy I submitted the new file to Createspace and all was well in the land... NOT!
At about this same time was when Createspace was absorbed by Amazon and the files of all books put out by Createspace were moved to Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing. Now keep in mind Createspace had 2-3 different files already for "The Bridge" and unfortunately, not only did the most recent 'clean' file not be the one that was moved over to KDP, the formatting went (as the late great Terry Pratchett would say) Wahooney-shaped.
Alas I only found out about this problem late last year when I decided it was time to start putting all of our Para-Earth Books onto Audible. Naturally, I chose the first book in the series to narrate and begin this process. I barely got through the Prologue before I realized what had happened and proceeded to beat a rhythm of despair using my head and my desk.
Naturally, I had backed up the last 'clean' copy of the book, and went in search of it, so I could upload that version onto KDP. Alas, when my last desktop began to breath its last, my efforts to transfer files that had been in MS Word 97 did not convert into the latest version cleanly and were totally unusable. Even my trusty trick of using memory sticks failed me, as the stick in question somehow managed to latch onto a stray magnet (the retracted metal end of the stick was the part that found the magnet) and everything on it was totally lost.
I quickly pulled down "The Bridge" from every outlet starting with KDP and it has remained missing in action ever since. Since then I finally got around to trying to re-edit the book only to find the deeper I went the more screwed up things had become. So yesterday after spending two hours trying to mark errors in the latest printed version, I came to realize that my writing style had changed drastically as well and I was finding it harder and harder to read the story. Finally, I set the book aside and thought about rewriting the entire book from the beginning. But I spoke with Helen about it last night before I did anything. Her thoughts mirrored my own.
Now before I go further, let me point out that Helen is a much more experienced writer than I am. She was writing short stories years before I tried my hand, and she got damn close several times to being published. In each case, the editors where like "We love your style... but this story isn't quite us. Please send us more..." Which was quite encouraging. But this was around the same time that Kindle, Nook, and other e-readers were taking the world by storm and many of the magazines that wanted to see more from her wound up folding and being lost to history.
But it was her writing experience and expertise, as well as sharp ideas that helped me to develop and shape "The Bridge" in the first place. At the time she hadn't wanted her name on the book, but after work began on "The Vampyre Blogs - Coming Home" I finally convinced her to help write parts of it that her name finally appeared on one of the books. After that she and I began talking about how much she had truly contributed to both "The Bridge" and "The Ship", and she felt some credit was due her on those as well. So I happily added her name to the covers of both.
Now with the decision made to rewrite "The Bridge" she suggested that she have more of a hand in the rewriting process and I readily agreed. Since we are aiming to release it next year, which will be the 10th anniversary of the book's original release, we may be adding a few scenes and dialogue in some sections. The book itself will resemble the original in almost all respects, while being a more "clean and polished" version, with a few additions which will make this 10th Anniversary Edition something special.
I also want to point out that anyone who already had a copy of "The Bridge" in your Kindle will have the 10th Anniversary Edition replacing it without any cost to you. If you don't get it, let us know and we will make sure you get the new version absolutely free! This isn't money-grab situation, this is correcting mistakes that I've tried repeatedly to fix.
And as I've mentioned before, there will be an audio version of the 10th Anniversary Edition being released and made available on Audible, Amazon, Itunes (which includes Apple).
So there's much work to do, but I'll try to keep posting as regularly as possible. Until then, take care everyone and keep writing.