Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Yesterday I promised an update on The First Book. There's a lot of information out there about query letters, selecting agents, making sure everything is perfect before you query, but not much about what happens after you sign with an agent. I suspect it's because the process is slightly different for every author so what happens in my case may or may not happen in yours, and it's difficult to write a one-size-fits-all template for the process.
Here's how it's working for me. When I first signed with Dan, we talked about some of the changes/edits he had in mind. As I've said before, they're pretty extensive. One of the biggest is changing the POV for one of the main characters from 3rd person to 1st person. If you're a writer, you know this is more than just changing pronouns. It completely changes the lens through which that character (and therefore the reader) experiences the story.
My novel is told through 3 points of view, so making this change meant I had to go in and rework almost a third of things. That's okay. I like working, especially when the changes make the story better. Which I think (hope!) they did.
I made those changes right before Christmas and sent everything off to the editor I'm working with. After the holidays, she started working on it, graciously fitting me in to her already tight schedule. (Have I mentioned everyone is so nice? Really, there's no reason to be afraid when querying. Book People are generally Good People. Go forth and query without fear.)
After sending off my manuscript, I sat around feeling stressed for a week or so. This is what I do to relax. I tell myself I'm taking some down time, and then sit around worrying that I'm not doing anything. One week of down time was all I could take. To de-stress, I started a second book. By the end of this week I should have about 20,000 words.
As for the first book, right now I'm waiting to hear back from the editor. Possibly by the end of this month, but as I said, she's fitting me in around books she's already scheduled. I just popped up out of nowhere, and she agreed to help. (I love her for that!) Things could easily get pushed back a bit.
So, that's where things stand. Hopefully in a week or so I'll have a manuscript with lots of red marks all over it. I feel a little bit like a kid waiting for Christmas. Which is strange, I know, but as one of my professors once said--A good critique is a gift.
He was so right. A critique is the best gift I could ask for, and I can't wait to unwrap it.