I just (almost) finished another round of revisions on my novel. Yes, just this morning. I’m almost ready to send it back to the agent who asked me to work with an editor on revisions, but first I just sent it to the printer so that I can read the hard copy all the way through one more time before sending it back in. I’ll pick it up and read it this afternoon.
If you haven’t been keeping up with my process, this is the second editor I’ve worked with at the agent’s request. The first one helped me in many ways, but I disagreed with some major direction she was giving me, so I asked the agent if there might be another editor I could work with. To my delight, she sent the manuscript to someone else, and this editor’s overview and specific suggestions have been extremely helpful. You can read more specifics about the process in this post from February if you’re interested:
Keep in mind that this is the THIRD editor I’ve worked with. The first was a freelance editor I hired on my own before submitting the manuscript to agents. Although the work has been frustrating at times, I feel that the novel has been through an MFA-level workshop process now.
If you’re a writer, you understand the difficulty of revising a book. And the necessity of having an editor (or two or three) and even some “early readers” to help you. An additional blessing for me is that a friend and mentor offered to read a recent version of the manuscript—along with the eleven pages of feedback from the editor—and help me interpret the editor’s advice. She agreed with the editor on some suggestions that I was struggling with, which helped me bite the bullet and move on those suggestions. Like re-structuring the novel in chronological order, using flash-backs more sparingly. (This was a huge project!)
This morning I put the finishing touches on the novel, including the addition of a few scenes, which was really fun. A writer is so often advised to cut huge parts out of a manuscript, so it was a wonderful surprise to be encouraged to add more sub-plots and develop a few of the minor characters more fully.
As I send the revised manuscript back to the agent (today or tomorrow) I’ll also comment on many of the editor’s suggestions, and explain why I did or did not follow some of them. I can only hope and pray that she likes the new version enough to finally take me on as a client and begin to look for a publishing home for Cherry Bomb. This has been a five-year journey so far, and I’m so ready to move forward with this project. Stay tuned….