I feel like I've finally come up for air! Last week I was submerged in intense book editing, and I'll be honest, it drove me nuts. You always love your book and your characters, but after reading your novel back to back about four times in a row, you're bound to get a little sick of it right? But I'm happy with the end product because I think I made the novel a lot better. Even though by the end of the week my eyes had glazed over and I now feel like I can recite the novel by heart.
Whenever I finish a novel I always do a few rounds of edits and polish it up real nice, then I leave it alone so I can clear my head from it, then come back and edit some more. And I did all that and felt pretty confident about it, I had even moved on and written another book, then I won an agent judged contest and the prize was a full manuscript request. Of course I was happy, I've had partial requests before but never a full, and this was the first time I've won a contest...but then the panic set in. No matter how much I edit a novel, every time I get a request from an agent I always do another read through, at least of the amount of pages the agent wants, just to make sure everything looks good. So I did that, but now I felt a lot more pressure than I felt before. All of a sudden I started doubting the book, thinking it wasn't *enough* in this way and that way, and it was just self doubt all over the place. What proceeded was a total manuscript re-haul. I edited out a lot of things, added two scenes, and of course when scenes are added you have to make sure the rest of the story is in shape to accept the added scenes. I was up most nights until 3 or 4 working on it, and towards the end of the week I thought I was almost done...then I noticed a plot hole.
I literally sat back and started at the document and wondered HOW DID I NOT SEE THIS? It wasn't a minor plot hole either, it was something that directly affected the main plot of the novel in a huge way, and I suddenly realized that it made no sense whatsoever and nothing I did would make it make sense. After freaking out about it for about five minutes, I started to think about how to fix it, and eventually realized that an entire scene of over 2000 words would have to be erased, and the novel restructured to forget it existed. What's interesting is in the back of my mind I had kind of wanted to get rid of that scene so other scenes could transition quicker, so I wasn't sad to see it go, but I was still pretty surprised that I'd missed the big issue it caused. But the novel lost nothing from losing the scene and ended up being better, which meant it never had to be there in the first place.
So after that was taken care of and more read throughs and edits were done, I finally felt like the novel was in tip top shape. Even if nothing comes of this full request I'm happy that I was able to feel the pressure enough to make the novel so much better. And now I have another book to get back to editing. Thought I'd want to take a break after last week, but I guess not!
I know I've dropped the ball on cheering on my write motivation peeps, so *cheers* to everyone hitting their goals!