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Keeping the pieces together … or how homeschooling mirrors writing!
I’m thrilled to be at Romance Junkies today as we slide into the last few days of the Release Me blog tour.
I’m currently in the process of editing Claim Me, the sequel to Release Me, and at the same time, my oldest daughter has headed back to school after the Christmas break, and my youngest and I are getting back into our homeschool groove.
The similarities between the two (editing and homeschooling) occurred to me today as I was editing a scene in which I realized I needed to bring a plot thread in earlier, and that meant revealing a character’s backstory earlier.
Pretty typical stuff for a writer … but how does it mirror homeschooling?
Because editing and revising are all about putting the pieces together. Taking a story apart, making it better, and then putting it back together again. And when you do that, you follow threads, because one change necessarily leads to another then another then another.
It works that way in education, too. The other day, Isabella and I were talking about the States. Her sister has to memorize the states and capitals in 5th grade, and so I figured getting a head start for Isabella was a great idea.
That got us talking about how the United States is divided into 50 states and that each state has cities, etc., and we talked about the city we live in. Then that led to her asking about the states v. the continents, so we pulled down the Big Ass Map that I had installed in our school/game room and we went through her continents and looked at Canada and the United States and Mexico, and then bopped over to Asia so she could find where she was born and lived until she was 3 and we adopted her (China).
And that led to a very basic discussion of how babies are born and why some times the mommy you have isn’t the mommy who had you in her tummy. And that led to shoes (shoes were a Big Deal for her for a long while; I think that if you took your shoes off in the orphanage, they ended up on some other kid’s feet in the morning) and that led to us searching How Things Are Made for an episode on shoes, but we got sidetracked by an episode on making Gummy Bears.
And then (by pure force of mommy/teacher will) went back to memorizing the states, then pulled out her state quarter collection. And THAT led us to talking about the presidents.
Structured? Maybe not, but each piece led to the next led to the next. And except for the mommy forcing of the conversation back to quarters, each leap was organic, as a novel should be. If you have to force those revisions/edits, you’re doing something wrong. Or at least something that will feel wrong to the readers.
And that, folks, is why revising and editing is like homeschooling. And, you know, I love doing both!
Any homeschooling parents out there? How about someone who has gone off on a tangent when you’re trying to get some information? (With the Internet, I will be very shocked if the answer is “no!”)
J. Kenner is the pen name of USA Today bestselling author Julie Kenner (who also writes as J.K. Beck). Release Me, an erotic romance that went on sale January 1 in the U.S. and the U.K., and in over a dozen other countries later in 2013.
You can hang out with J.K., learn more about Release Me and her other novels, or just poke around and see what catches your eye at her website, www.jkenner.com, and also at her J. Kenner Facebook page, www.facebook.com/jkennerbooks and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/juliekenner
From Sue re the J. Kenner Blog Tour
Release Me by J. Kenner
Book Blurb:For fans of Fifty Shades of Grey and Bared to You comes an erotic, emotionally charged romance between a powerful man who’s never heard “no” and a fiery woman who says “yes” on her own terms.
He was the one man I couldn’t avoid. And the one man I couldn’t resist.
Damien Stark could have his way with any woman. He was sexy, confident, and commanding: Anything he wanted, he got. And what he wanted was me.
Our attraction was unmistakable, almost beyond control, but as much as I ached to be his, I feared the pressures of his demands. Submitting to Damien meant I had to bare the darkest truth about my past—and risk breaking us apart.
But Damien was haunted, too. And as our passion came to obsess us both, his secrets threatened to destroy him—and us—forever.
Release Me is an erotic romance intended for mature audiences.
Release Me by J. Kenner (an excerpt)