Steps In Between

Celaine Charles ~ My journey as a writer ~ CLICK "Steps In Between" for past posts

Seam Keepers

Reminder to click on “Steps In Between” at the top to find all my Sunday posts. 

November 17th Update, 2019:

Okay! Here’s what’s happening. I decided to first query the interested editors and agents I pitched at the PNWA conference in September. I figured I would see how that goes before sending more queries out to agents on QueryTracker. I can only handle so many rejections at once. And the more I learn about this process, the more I know the rejections will follow. It’s not only about the story or the writing, but more a marketing issue. Can your story be sold in a saturated market? So, of course, I’m working on my craft and original story idea in hopes Seam Keepers will be marketable. I STILL DON’T KNOW. But, I continue to work on it…

I did receive interest back from an Indie Publishing House, and a request for my full manuscript. I learned who they were at the conference and was in love with the idea of working with them. Weeks later, after receiving the nicest rejection letter I’ve ever read, I decided to work through some of their suggestions. I was complemented on several facets of my story and my writing (which I feel I need to include for my own self-esteem – rejections suck)! However, the best gift of all was their invitation to resubmit my manuscript if I can strengthen my character’s arc. So, you can guess, that is what I’m attempting to do. I don’t know if I can fix things to their approval, and I may just end up with two rejection letters from one house, but at least I will know I tried. My plan B is to then hit QueryTracker.

Thanks for your support and prayers and well wishes! I wasn’t sure I was going to share this in a post, but if this blog is about my writing journey, then this is part of the process.

August 10th Update, 2019:

Writing a query and synopsis is still kicking my %#$$! I feel like my story is far too complicated to explain (which means I’m not there yet). So, working on that. And in my writing class, we are working on taglines, log lines, and pitches. This is definitely not the funnest part of writing. Of course, I suppose this is a good problem to have, if I must have one. I appreciate positive energy and prayers, I’m going to need them.

June 21st Update, 2019:

My editor returned my manuscript with lots of minor fixes, but overall GREAT NEWS! She loved the story, which was my biggest worry. Now I am onto shining it up even more before the fall writing conference in Seattle (PNWA). My goal is to have it ready to query by then. After that… I wait. I try not to freak out if it’s not accepted right away. I will find my tribe! Thanks for your prayers supporters, but maybe keep praying. 🙂

June 1st Update, 2019:

I finally finished my rewrite and revisions, and edits after that. Seam Keepers is ready for my editor. It’s a little past my deadline (by a month), but the important thing; it’s done. Well, until my editor overhauls it with fixes. But, that’s okay. I’m further along in my journey, and that feels good. Accepting prayers and good wishes at this time. Thank you supporters!

An April 2019 Update on my Seam Keepers Rewrite:

I am nearly done with my rewrite, whew! And what’s kicking me into gear to complete this love of labor? I found an editor! She is going to help me map out these final (but lengthy) steps in finishing my book. I will share more about her services after we start work, officially the end of April/start of May. I am more than excited… words cannot describe. Now, I’m off to get to it (praying all this work will pay off and the story reads as it does in my mind. I know that’s the defining moment). Thanks for all your support!

A September 2018 Update on my Seam Keepers Rewrite:

My rewrite is rolling. For some reason it took all summer to get motivated, but now in September, I’ve been busy writing and revising in every spare pocket of time. I have moved the timing of the story a few weeks further ahead. This way my characters have already graduated high school. I hated thinking they might end up as drop-outs. I’m a teacher in my other life. I couldn’t have that. I’ve also been working more on my two main character’s arcs, developing them more richly. Or trying to, anyway. The pacing has intensified, as I’m writing in limited third person POV. Every place my characters felt themselves doing something – they experience the action first-hand now. Passive voice and telling are scary things that seep in when I’m not hyper-vigilant in my focus.

Writing a full novel is an enormous job, and I often want to quit. But this story has grown plump and it’s waiting for rebirth. I’m not in control anymore. Ashton and Mason are fighting for more than just the Dream Realm. They want to see the light of reality. They want to come alive in the reader’s mind. And I’m the only person that can make that happen. So, I will persevere…

Below are a few new paragraphs from random chapters in my book.

A few lines from Ashton’s perspective:

Graduating high school was supposed to be an achievement, not a sacrifice. Ashton had just lost both her parents, and now with the betrayal of her best friend… suddenly her senior year felt highjacked.

Relatively speaking.

All three of them stood alive and well in her backyard. Blue and white party balloons announced their presence to the onlooking sunset. But the girl inside her outer shell felt no cheer in the moment, no joy in her accomplishment. There was no hope in her future, which now felt miserably lonelier than she’d ever imagined.

Her parents were not her parents. The truth of her adoption slipping their minds until a recent search for vaccination records proved more than her up-to-date inoculations. With no siblings to rant to, Mason was all she had left. And he had been enough since the day they’d met, all those years ago, even before his mother had died.

Until sixteen hours ago when he’d lied to her for the first time she could remember in their thirteen years of friendship.

I love this one about Mason:

Mason dropped his clothes into a pile on his bathroom floor. Steam rose from the shower behind him, but the water would never reach a temperature hot enough to clean the horror. To scrub the blood off his back, or from the insides of his elbows and behind his knees. He studied the drying bits of tarnished brown through the mirror, staring at the only evidence the living hell he’d just experienced was real. And with graduation hours away.

Well, I’m sure I will be revising more – it’s what I do now every time I turn around. But, that’s okay. This book may take forever to finish, but I will complete it. As I mentioned above, I don’t hold the reigns anymore.

Summer 2018:

My manuscript is undergoing a massive “Rewrite” – because I couldn’t help myself! So even the beginning (posted below) has changed quite dramatically. But, I’m learning as I go. More specific updates can be found on my Projects page. Check it out. And thanks for your patience and support. Please do check out my Colors Series on This will encourage me as I work to complete Seam Keepers. And thank you to my sweet supporters and followers already. You make my day, every day!

A Poem for Ashton and Mason:

It is Time

Love spreads comfortable wings

around knowing hearts,

perhaps unknowing,

only wanting

in desperation.


Secrets     hopes     wishes

upon stars lost, on course,

meandering aimlessly

until time decides

it is time.

A little sneak peek at the beginning…

Ashton followed the line of her pencil, virtually moving on its own accord. She didn’t think when she sketched, her hand always doodled the same oak tree. The same knotted trunk bound to the other eleven, making its bulk unusually wide. But lately, as she drew in the oversized limbs, they seemed to flail in the illusion of air, wrestling something invisible. Something undrawn birds watched through shaded branches. Their songs a riddle about her future. Their glare a reminder. The one person always there for her would soon be gone.

Beta Readers Are Amazing

A friend reading one of my many Seam Keeper drafts. Thank you to all my beta readers.