Don’t Overlook the Little Things – Notes on Revision

The revision process has been a series of aha moments for me. The latest one has to do with how two of my characters come together and form a bond.

The book I’m revising is, of course, “Mik Murdoch, Boy Superhero” and the bond I’m talking about is that of a superhero and his sidekick, or, in this case, a boy and his dog.

Let me set the stage: Mik has just been given a puppy by his parents. Except, the puppy doesn’t want to do anything except mope around the house. Mik and his mother discuss how the puppy has just been weaned and is homesick. It might help if Mik and the dog spend some quality time together.

In the original version, I spend an entire sentence basically having Mik coax the puppy with some treats and off they go.

For any of you who know anything about comic books, the whole hero/sidekick thing is pretty important. Entire story arcs have been done to bring the two together. I did it in one sentence.

The comment basically said: “This is pretty weak and needs to be fleshed out. The relationship is important throughout the book so spend some time on it.”

I did, and while I’m not 100% certain it hits all the notes it needs to, I now have a much better picture of how the two friends bonded. It may need a touch more but it also serves to bring more life to the two.

If I’ve done it once, chances are I will see it again in the book. Now I have a better understanding of how to fix it and recognize it.



  1. I had this same problem with the novel I’m publishing on podiobooks, the Horde. My hero does some pretty icky stuff and I hadn’t given the sidekick enough of a reason to believe in the hero and stay by his side. I’ve yet to see a book that would be hurt by more development and space given to tightening/developing character bonds.

  2. So very true. An important part of character development is the relationships they keep. How those relationships developed is very good to know.

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