Almost two months ago I wrote about being in the final revision stage for my first manuscript. Well, I’m still there.
See, here’s what happened: I finally got my last reader’s comments back. She’s the one I was waiting for, the one who majored in creative writing and has a lot of editing experience. Her feedback was worth the wait but it was a lot to go through. I got overwhelmed so I set it aside. That’s my policy–if it’s not fun or I start to get frustrated, confused, or depressed about it then it’s time to take a break. Besides, I got a brain wave on some changes I wanted to make to manuscript #2, so why not just do that instead? And that’s what I did.
I’m back to manuscript #1 today feeling less frustrated and ready to work. Here’s the little conundrum I’m running into though: Super proofreader wants more details about everything and more story information. She said something about my book being a “shorter” book, which I find a little confusing. I think my book is too long, especially if I’m looking to get it published. Right now it’s at about 93,000 words. I’m trying to condense it, tighten it up, get rid of repetition and unnecessary details that bog the story down. It will probably still be “too long” when I’m done with that…but how am I even supposed to do that and add more? Yeah, I don’t know either. I’m making a list of things to consider and decide on as I go along, I have remember that just because a reader wants me to change something doesn’t mean I have to change it. Plus I’m not making it into two books, this is a story I’m determined to fit into one novel. Otherwise I have to add a bunch of useless fluff to make it long enough to support two novels, or I get two very short novels. I’m not a fan of either of those ideas.
It’s also funny because in this story the main characters go on a quest/adventure, but unlike most other books of this type that I’ve read, that’s only half the book. The other half tells you what happens when they get home, it’s a huge part of the overall story. When I initially wrote it I worried that the second half would be boring to readers even though I really liked it, however almost all of my readers said they liked the second half better that the first half…except this last reader. She said it did drag a little. So which reader input should I weigh more? Leave it because the majority of readers liked it or change it because my most experienced reader/editor recommended changing it? I’m leaning towards leaving it for now…the whole point is they go on a quest and that leads to a bunch of other stuff happening once they get home. The quest is only part of the story, not THE story.
I have learned something annoying about myself as I’ve been revising: I like adverbs way too much! I mean, I know I shouldn’t use adverbs often but they just keep sneaking in there. Even when I reread it I’m thinking, “Dude, what’s with all the adverbs?!?” LOL! Oh well, I figure if I get them out of my system and just delete them later then I’m okay. That’s why they call it a rough draft (in my case, very rough).
Anyone who thinks writing is easy has never tried it. Just saying.
Anyway, I have a lot to go through but I still feel like I’m near the end (for now) point. My goal is to have it polished, to the best of my ability, by the end of the year. I’m ready to move on…manuscript #3 wants to be written and if I have too many projects going on at once I’m more likely to get stressed and stop working on them all. Can’t have that…
Feel free to ignore this post, I’m mostly just talking to myself. 😉