First of all Mark, let me welcome you to my blog site today.  Good to know you. It gives me great pleasure to profile you today. Please, #RRBC authors, join me in welcoming, and supporting him.

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Editing for Dummies
By Mark Aberdeen

Another author told me that he did his own editing. I was impressed. How could I not be? There was no way I could have put out a novel without an editor’s hand. While I had good solid story, editors do more than check spelling and grammar. A good editor will help show where things belong, what areas need to be trimmed, what needs to be better explained, where dialog can be inserted to replace exposition and other methods to help punch up a story.

I can only speak from my experience, but I get way too close to my stories. Even when I take a break and step back, there are things I miss. My beta readers are helpful, but what I’ve learned from beta readers is the farther they are outside my friend and family circle, the better off I am. I get very little use out of, ‘this is great.’ What I really need to hear is, ‘what are you thinking?’ or ‘do you remember when Bob did this action, it means this won’t work, moron.’ I added the moron bit. That’s usually the moment where I face palm and know that my reader was right.

I’ve done the best I can, my beta readers have helped me, but with my editor is where I receive the most input and help. My relationship with my editor is tough. He’s a great guy and I really like him, but when he puts his editor hat on he’s ruthless. I wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s important to not only check the story, but I also need to be able to defend a character’s motivations and actions. Leaps in logic, plot holes, contradictions and characters doing something out of, well, character will pull a reader out of the story. It’s one of the most important relationships an author can have. Choose wisely.

As for my author friend, after reading his book, I suggested that he get an editor.


Knight and Dex


Snow settled over New London and covered the alley with a chilly blanket, which normally gave me a moment’s pause to reflect. I might have thought about tranquility, but there was nothing tranquil in the roundhouse kick I took to the face. Steam rose from crimson splatter as my blood hit the freshly fallen snow.

Minx’s claws flashed. I jumped back and narrowly avoided being torn open at the belly.

It was difficult to wax poetic while someone was doing their best to kill me.

Welcome to my life.

I swung my left fist. My intention wasn’t to connect with Minx’s jaw but to buy a precious second. The parry worked well enough and gave me the moment I needed to draw the pulse pistol from under my coat. I bellowed a triumphant, “Ha!”

My moment of glory was short-lived. Another kick connected with my right hand. The blow jarred the weapon loose and it sailed into a snow bank. Powdery snow swallowed it whole. The thing about being unarmed, it felt a bit like being naked in a crowd. No way to cover my ass.

I gripped my stinging hand. “Shit.”

A powerful arm, furry and itchy and stiff as a crowbar, hooked me around the neck. Minx had gotten behind me, and the momentum of her attack tore my feet from the ground. I cartwheeled, forcing her to detach and spring back, but I landed face-down in a heap. The snow with all its apparent fluffiness did nothing to cushion my fall. The impact rattled my bones and lights danced across my vision, swirling in loopy rings.

All I needed was another concussion.

Strong hands grabbed me by the collar and belt. My stomach lurched as I was torn from the relative comfort of the ground and flipped onto my back like a flapjack. Minx pounced on top of me and pinned my arms to my sides with her powerful thighs. Normally, I approved of such positions, but she wasn’t Pink Panther and this wasn’t foreplay. I feared she would crunch me like a walnut in a nutcracker. I gasped for precious air.

To any observer it would appear as if I were unprepared for this fight. That observer would have been correct. I’d seen her running down the sidewalk and duck into this alley. She was up to something and I’d interrupted her. Evidence suggested it was something she didn’t want the cops to know about. While my intent was to have a friendly chat with her, she’d decided to take our exchange in a different direction.

Minx had a reputation in underworld circles as an effective messenger. Our not-so-cozy encounter fell within the realm of her typical delivery method. While I didn’t feel like she took sadistic glee in her work, I thought she took pride in a job well done. I, on the other hand, found the work environment hostile, and already I was drawing up a complaint to her HR department.

Purchase Mark Aberdeen’s Dex Series here:
Dex Territory (Dex Territory Series Book 1)
TWB Press:
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Twitter handle: @Mark_Aberdeen