One thing I am increasingly convinced of as I keep doing this – I think there is no such thing as a good writer. There are only good rewriters. Rewriting is the act of understanding not what your story is doing but rather what it needs to do, what it wants to be, and learning how to remove the parts of the story that inhibit it from being that thing.
If I did a good job, my editor will come back and tell me that the story is now more of itself, IE, more of what it was trying to be in the first place. If not, then it’s off to more work.
This is the other part of rewriting: commitment. Rewriting means doing it til it’s done.
Anyways, here’s my slapped-together summary for CITY OF BLADES:
The city of Voortyashtan was once the home of the goddess of death, war and destruction, but now it’s little more than a ruin.
Five years after the incident in Bulikov, General Turyin Mulaghesh is called out of retirement and sent to this hellish place to find a Saypuri intelligence officer who’s gone AWOL in the middle of a mission.
But the ghosts of past wars have followed her there, and soon she begins to wonder what happened to the souls in the afterlife when the Divinities vanished. Do the dead sleep soundly in the land of death? Are they simply gone? Or do they have plans of their own?
I could tell you more, like about what’s blocking the Solda River, Sigrud’s daughter, how Saypur became so technologically advanced so rapidly, what government positions Shara and Sigrud now occupy, and exactly what Mulaghesh got up to in the Summer of Black Rivers, but it’s probably a lot easier for you just to read it.
CITY OF BLADES is out 1/26/2016 in the US.