So it’s been a while, but I thought I’d update everyone with how my book is going. I’m currently working my way through my first substantive edit. So this run-through is focusing on content and plot, as oppose to a copy edit which focuses on grammar/punctuation etc. I am getting so close to finishing, which is a great feeling. As my university studies are coming to an end for this year, I’ve had a lot more time to dedicate to my writing.
I have to say, it’s exciting to see my book start to come together properly. I’ve been working on ironing out the inconsistencies (one character’s eyes kept changing colour!), making sure my writing is clear, working on the characterisation, and just double checking there aren’t any plot holes.
So it’s time I set myself a goal. I have been complacent so far with my writing goals. I haven’t set any deadlines as it’s difficult to do with uni. But, I will have the next 4 months off and I want to take advantage of all the extra time I’m going to have. I do not want this time to go to waste, I want to utilise it! I must set a goal.
So this is my goal: Have my manuscript ready for my beta readers in two weeks.
I think this is achievable, especially as how I only have 5 more chapters left, and the remaining ones are already quite polished. I love the process at times! I feel so proud and talented and narcissistic … and then other times? Sometimes I read a chapter I wrote and then have to go curl up in the fetal position, rocking back and forth, repeating the words, “I’m not terrible, I swear I’m not terrible,” over and over until I have the courage to tackle the horrendous word vomit on the page. That’s normal, right? Right!?
I will just make sure my readers know that I haven’t done the copy edit yet. Luckily, my chosen beta readers are my friends (massive bookworms) so they’ll give me the criticism I need, focusing on the content and not the formatting/structure etc. While they’re reading through it, that’s when I plan to start cracking with the copy edit, a process I am not looking forward to. I definitely need to brush up on some of my grammar and punctuation rules, especially dialogue! But basically I want to get an idea of what the beta readers think of the content of my manuscript. I want to know what they think of the story, characters, setting, tone, style, etc.
Once that’s done, I’ll probably do another few substantive edits and some more copy edits until I’m happy. And then the giant, scary task of sending my manuscript to publishing houses begins … oh that thought is terrifying. One step at a time, I think.