Yikes.
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.

2 Comments

  1. brenda on June 15, 2007 at 12:43 pm

    So many different opinions-what works and what doesn’t. I feel sure that you and your editor will work out the kinks and it will WORK out in the end-your books always do…
    However, as a teacher and a writer, I know that most of us think differently…and sometimes what one person wants us to change doesn’t always do it for US…
    I tell my students “You will have teachers who think and teach differently-learn from each of them–they are not WRONG–they just do things their own way-take what you learn and use what works for YOU in the long run.” This works not only for writing but other things.

  2. Diane Chamberlain on June 15, 2007 at 12:55 pm

    So true, Brenda. One thing that’s difficult in critiquing others’ work is a tendency to want them to write the way we do when their own “voice” and style may be completely different but every bit as good–or better–than our own.

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