ell, actually, not writing. Editing. I printed and scribbled all over the manuscript. Mostly this seems to consist of asking myself snarky questions and circling 1.5 million ellipses.
No, really, if I had a buck for every ellipses, I could retire and be a hermit.
So, now I am correcting the ellipses (most of them become commas or periods and their attendant capitalized next word) and answering questions. For example, a dead body at the beginning should match a dead body found later, MO wise, and if not, we both need to know why and believe it.
Fun fact: I opened up a copy of The Chocolatier’s Wife today, to confirm the spelling of one of my main character’s last names. The woman is Cecelia, and she was all over CW and is even more important in this book. I adore her. In my head she looks like Zoe from Firefly, but dresses more like a Romany.
And I am reminded that in CG, she is not called Cecelia. She is called Ailaini. Says so right in the original published PDF.
And I stared at the screen and I was like, why the hell did I do that? She has always been Cecelia, in my head. But at the time, the editor pointed out that Cecelia was not a very exotic name. Cecelia…or Ailaini, as she must be called…is from the tropical island Stairs and Alyssen. So, her name had to match who she was.
But, thankfully, God gave us find and replace.
Ailaini and her village were attacked by pirates, and enslaved. But William and his crew freed them. She didn’t want to go back to her life before, so she got Isan Dietson, William’s second in command, to marry her. She’s a widow, she works at the Chocolate Shop and is fast friends with both William and Tasmin, but she’s been hiding a secret.
I love her because she embraces life beautifully. She loves deeply – she embraces her new community by dancing blessing patterns early in the morning in the sand, to help Azin shore and her people thrive. She reads the worst pulp novels she can find and passes them on the William. She teases Tasmin and gives her a sister the other woman never knew she needed but now can’t live without.
She’s amazing and witty and I hope you will adore her, too.
But she’s still Cecelia, in my head.