A few months ago a Facebook friend of mine posted about false titles used on screenplays to hide the plot line when corresponding. “Hey, what did you think of Peaches and Cream?” could really refer to a planned movie about Lincoln Logs.
I decided to implement that for a series I’m calling Painted Wall.
Because, quite frankly, I can’t believe the story hasn’t been done. If the real title were to “leak,” there are other authors who might think the idea is great and get it into print before me. I’m not what you would call “quick” in getting manuscripts ready. Raw production isn’t my problem, it’s self-editing and polishing.
Most writers, I’m sure, would absolutely love to spend their time composing instead of editing. The process is tedious, but vital. After all, what paid editor knows my stories better than I do? Could they take a rough manuscript and turn it into a polished manuscript that would fulfill my vision? Probably not.
So I keep slogging through Painted Wall, adding scenes here and there, self-editing, polishing, and running what I labored to produce past my critique partners. Wash, rinse, repeat. Painted Wall has seen so many rewrites and versions I’ve lost track.
My best count consists of (1) an original version, (2-4) revised versions, (5-13) updated version, then the “lettered” versions through Version C. That makes three major rewrites and edits for a total of sixteen versions. And Version D will be created soon, because there’s so much change in “C” it doesn’t make sense to call it “C” any more.
But all these rewrites and editing of Painted Wall is about as exciting as . . . watching paint dry.