Thursday, February 3, 2011

You may call it procrastinating…

But I call it mulling.

So About a month and a half ago I got my first full read rejection. That is to say I got my full manuscript in the hands of one of the powers-that-be and they read the whole thing. And then they passed. Now of course I hated myself for a while. Then I hated my book for a while. Then I hated myself some more. Some of my friends told me there had to be something good for them to have wanted to read it in the first place. Well, I have a secret I’ll admit here: someone I know works at the big-amazing-powers-that-be-workplace and they offered to put it in the right hands as a favor. Now I know I’ve griped about people who have those connections, but of course I was gonna try that since I had the opportunity. It didn’t work out for me, but I’m okay with that.

The positive thing that came out of it was that I finally got some serious critical suggestions out of it. I have a full page write up of why they didn’t like my work. Now, yes, that could just make you hate yourself more, but for me it showed me how my book could be better.
When your beta readers are friends and family they’ll mostly just tell you how brilliant you are because they haven’t been able to write a book. While we all like a little ego stroking now and then, this just isn’t helpful if you want to be a serious, professional writer. And boy do I ever.

I’m not going to take all of their suggestions because I don’t agree with everything that they said. Point of interest they said once you took the magic away my main protagonist comes off arrogant and aloof. That was a harsh blow. But that’s their reaction to her, it might not be the same reaction everyone has. But they did tell me that they weren’t given a chance to connect with the two supporting characters, that was helpful. Also they didn’t understand the source and cause/effects of the magic my characters have. Helpful.

So it’s almost been two months now and I haven’t written a word. Haven’t edited one page. Haven’t touched the manuscript. I thought I was procrastinating this whole time but now that I feel better about re-reading the rejection for the 134,875 time, I can do so without wanting to rend my clothes and slit my wrists so I know really I’ve just been mulling over their criticisms and trying to figure out what I want to do with it. So I’m ready to dive back in.


Stephanie said...

I feel your pain! I've gotten to the point that I can brush off a query rejection, but getting rejected by someone who's actually read my book still cuts like a knife. I'm glad that you got some suggestions out of the experience though, and I think you've got the right idea to take the ones that help and put aside the ones that don't. Keep on pushing, and you'll see your book on shelves before you know it. Happy writing! :)

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