Looking Back and Looking Forward



Note from the future: this post is (sort of) about [Victim’s Original Third Chapter]. You may also want to read Victim’s [afterword].

I’m in a weird position by rereleasing my books under an updated writing name. I have found that, in looking forward, I’m also looking back. Especially around Victim.

Before I continue, you’ll likely want to read this blog post: [Victim’s Stance on Guns]

I still get some frustrating feedback on that subject in Victim. Since I’m rereleasing my books under my updated writing name, now is also a good time to clarify that in the book itself. I’m not doing anything major. In fact, I counted six instances where I added a line, rewrote a line, or deleted something. For example:

“Although, perhaps, she was being a bit naïve. Maybe we both were.”

I added that to what some of my readers have called the “preachy bit” in chapter three. That bit was never intended to be preachy – it was intended to show their simplistic view of guns while also doing some world building. Admittedly, I wrote this in college. I would probably approach it differently if I wrote the book now. (Don’t know what I’m talking about? Read the above link.)

Here’s another example:

“She declared, emphasizing her strong (albeit, rather simplistic) view.”

That breaks up what was a block of dialogue text. It helps clarify their viewpoint, but I’ve improved enough as a writer to see that I should have already broken up that text. I held myself back from making too many of those sorts of updates – everyone improves, and I am not an exception. Although I did take this opportunity to clarify one other thing:

“I knew why it was happening. But I just saw Rina, my girlfriend. Not . . . that. She was perfect to me.”

That change isn’t about gun violence. It’s about why a woman reacts so badly to Rina on the train. This was a common point of confusion amoung readers. I’m still not outlining the exact reason in the text, but now it should be clearer that Mica is not narrating every detail about her. I’ll still allow each reader to draw their own conclusion about why people see her in a particular way.

I stand by these changes. I have my reasons, and they are documented above.

But I’m also looking forward.

(I did, admittedly, fix three typos that have been pointed out to me by readers. Whoops.)

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