Just a quick note to say that my early readers have finished with the manuscript and I’ll soon be starting revision #10.
Yay! It felt really done last time. But now that I look at it again, I see that it’s solidly good but needs some muscling up. It’s nice to get to a point where it feels like it is it’s own being. My little book’s all grown up.
Hopefully after this edit, I’ll be able to narrow my focus for my other two projects. I’m at that lovely messy point with them where I have NO IDEA what the plot is doing. It’s both exciting and exasperating.
A note on early readers:
I chose 6 people of the 15 or so who offered:
2 bailed. 1 because of over-commitment. (But she gets a pass forever, because years ago she was one of the saints who slogged all the way through the god-awful 200,000-word first draft of my first attempt at writing a novel). And the second because she didn’t care for the genre.
1 commercial fiction reader. This was very helpful. I write lit fic. But having a commercial reader gave me lots of useful criticism on pacing and plot.
1 actress. Always a good choice. Actresses know how to give constructive criticism. They also appreciate emotional nuance.
1 English teacher. I haven’t gotten this critique back yet, so we’ll see how it goes.
1 wild card. Someone I know only marginally, but who, if they hate it, I won’t run into in the grocery store. I’m awaiting this one as well.
My husband has also read it, but his feedback is almost useless, because he loves everything I write. (I’m sorry, darling. You know it’s true).
I feel primed and ready. I want to jump on the beast and start surgery. I have a game plan and notes. I know just where to start.
I just wanted to take a moment to say how very grateful I am for my early readers. If you find early readers who are honest and insightful, treasure them. They’re worth their weight. Also, keep a rotation of people for different projects, because you don’t want to burn anyone out.
And reciprocate. Read for others. Even if they haven’t read for you. What goes around comes around.
Now. To the manuscript!