For those of you who have been watching closely, you will know that we have finally produced, after a really long gestation period, the first of three manuscripts in our planned series – Eden’s Fall. In draft, of course – we are hoping to have it ready for publishing in June 2017.
You know how it is. You work on something really hard. Maybe you have to rework it. Maybe you have to rework it a lot. And then you get to a point where you just need someone else – maybe several someones – to look at it and tell you what it is.
We mentioned way back when we knew we were getting close that we were going to need beta readers, knowing how vital that step was going to be. This is our first novel, after all. We’ve been learning so much about the craft and our own strengths and weaknesses on the fly that we knew we were going to require extra, clear, intelligent eyes on the draft manuscript.
And, boy howdy.
Just before the New Year, we sent our baby out into the world to trusted betas, along with a worksheet with questions we hoped would crystalize what works well and what doesn’t work, identify gaps that need filling, and point out stuff that isn’t needed at all. Turns out the holiday break was a pretty good time for them to put in the effort. And they put a lot of effort into it. They read it twice! They made comprehensive notes, meaningful suggestions, and even the elements that they didn’t “get” tell us a great deal about where we need to focus our attention.
Most gratifying is that all who’ve read it say it’s a good story and, overall, well told. So, YAY!
But now the work begins – again.
We are now heads down reworking, rewriting, writing new stuff. The three of us are conferencing in blocks of two to three hours at a time to decide what needs to be done and which one of us is going to do it. And you know what? As hard as this is, we are flexing new muscles, we are being creative, our imaginations are fired again. This is fun!
*S. A. Young and K. R. Brorman giving C. C. the side eye over that one*
Well, some of it is fun.
And it always takes me ten times longer to get any writing done…