I never intended to make another editorial pass at my manuscript. But now I see additional work is inevitable because I have an experienced editorial reader who recommends a number of embellishments, modifications, and deletions to my manuscript before I send it off to the Library of Congress.
Many people have helped me over the past five years:
- I learned the basics from my talented creative writing teacher, Connie Flynn
- I developed my story with help from my critique group (we’ve all gone our separate ways – one even moving out-of-state)
- My beta readers slogged through the early efforts
- My husband reads every draft – he knows the plot in his sleep
- The agent who gave me explicit, detailed directives as to what needs fixing.
So now I have the “book doctor” aka experienced reader (suggested by the above mentioned agent) with the fixes. This new person is a published writer, a creative writing teacher, and has worked as an editor for several major publishers. Her advice is lengthy, detailed, and invaluable.
So here I go again. I embark on yet another six weeks of intense work. At least it is comforting to learn that the “telling details” I added several versions ago but removed because they slowed the action actually have value and need to be resurrected. Thanks goodness I saved them in my “someday file.” My editorial reader calls these descriptions “situating”. I think my habit for wordiness may actually be one of my writing strengths! Also, I need more focus on writing consistency into my main character’s behavior. This means I have to determine where each character arc begins, grows, and ends. Oh, and the timing of multiple characters actions needs to be coordinated because right now some of my people trip over each other. So stay tuned as the creative process begins anew. The plot thickens.