I finished draft two last Tuesday! Happy dance! You might have seen so on my Instagram. Last week, was a weird week. I think I must say that about every week. I often feel like I’m floating and drifting quite out of myself. I’ve worked on my book for so long now that to be nearish to the end seems surreal and quite dreamlike. Plus, the book is about to be no longer mine alone. I reached the point where I need critiques from others. I’ve spent so long doing this on my own and I was getting to the point where I didn’t know what to change or what to do next.
I said in this post about my thoughts on finishing draft one, that the beginning of my book needed serious rewriting and reworking. And that part was easy, if time-consuming. I ended up rewriting chapters one through seven, with some minor changes to chapters eight (one of my favorite chapters) and nine. Then I just got… stuck. But I also felt accomplished. There was nothing more that I could reasonably change without some feedback. I did go through my manuscript with my new Grammarly Chrome extension to edit some grammar mistakes. I didn’t want my beta readers to hate me. (Highly recommend the extension for writing and blogging!)
I did research on questions to ask beta readers and turned it into a comprehensive feedback form. Oh, I also used a lot of the questions from this book that I reviewed about marketing for authors. I also wrote a letter to my beta readers explain some of my expectations because some of my critiquers are not really writers, but they are avid readers which is what’s important. Like I told them, I need feedback on my story overall. How are the characters and the plot and the pacing and the… Just everything. Again, this story is no longer mine. It’s starting to see the world, even if quite shyly at first, being introduced to friends and family. Sidenote: Does anyone have recommendations for finding more beta readers?
I also go to a writer’s group and they have given me invaluable feedback about my first chapter. The first chapter especially is vital for attracting agents, publishers, and readers! This is what will make them decide to continue reading! What makes them buy the thing! My 100k young adult fantasy adventure book! But you know the advice a lot of the writer’s in my workshop group said, I need to add more! Yes, I need to write a chapter before chapter one! So that’s what I might be messing around with this week. Adding some backstory to my character.
Are you a writer? How does your editing process work? Let me know in the comments about your work in progress!