I’m not panicking yet, but getting close. Last night my critique group read chapter four and had some helpful things to say–mostly about the character’s voice. My last sentence in the chapter, while lovely prose, is not something a man would think. How can I still have such missteps this close to deadline?
I’m reassuring myself that I always feel this way about now. I want the manuscript to be perfect, but the reality is that I will be making changes for a couple of months to come. Once I turn it in, my editor will see things–a problem with character motivation, perhaps, or the need for an extra scene–that need to be changed. She’ll write me a loooooong editorial letter that will initially freak me out. And then I’ll get down to work on making the changes, at which time I can perfect anything that still bugs me.
On the positive side, I’m finding my characters’ plights deeply moving, and that’s a good thing. It’s after midnight, so I will hold that good thought in my mind as I go to bed.