Editing your novel. My experience of getting professional feedback

To date, I’ve submitted the first 3 chapters of my first novel, Art and Soul, to 23 literary agents to no avail.

So, before continuing with submissions, I decided it was time to ask a professional editor to look at those first three chapters and give me critical feedback.

I researched my options, selected my editor, sent off my first 3 chapters and synopsis, and waited for their report with a mixture of excitement and dread.

Editor writing cartoon

The good

I paid for critical and I got it. However, for the sake of my own self-esteem I must keep repeating an opening comment: “on the whole” I write well. That’s a relief. I shouldn’t chuck it all in just yet then. 🙂

The improveable

There were bits and bobs I won’t bore you with, because the headline, Dear Reader, was tremendous: cut chapters 1 and 2 and start with chapter 3.
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New pages to make my blog easier to navigate

Holidays are a good time for some blog housekeeping (cue brilliant comic from Fowl Language Comics…)

Christmas clean up from Fowl Language Comics

I’ve recently created a few blog pages to keep my blog content organized and make posts easy for visitors to find (I hope!).

Now under Sweet’s Cakes on the top menu (see screen-grab below) you’ll find:

  • A new Recipes Index. I’ve listed all my recipes in alphabetical order under headings such “Cakes” and “Biscuits/Cookies”. Creating this page was also a great excuse to use this cute cupcake clipart:Cupcakes images cartoon for blog
  • Baking. The archive of all my baking posts, appearing in reverse chronological order.

Screengrab of new Art and Soul recipe index page cakes muffins brownies biscuits cookies and desserts with links

And then under Reading (see screen-grab below):

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Editing your own writing. Can you ever be “done”?

When is a book finished? And other writerly ponderings…

I finished the first draft of my first novel, Art and Soul, back in November 2014. I spent two months editing, then sent the manuscript to my first two readers. While they were reading, I read a couple of books on self-editing and realized I’d committed a lot of glaring errors.

I used my readers’ feedback and what I’d learnt from the books to do another complete manuscript “fix”. I then sent this draft to more readers. Their feedback resulted in more re-writes, particularly to the beginning of chapter 1, which I freely admit I’m still not 100% happy with.

The writer funny by Tom Gauld cartoon writing problems

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The Real Neat Blog Award

 

Thank you to Charley at booksandbakes1 and Deanna at a novel glimpse for nominating me for the Real Neat Blog Award. As is becoming a bit of a theme here, it’s taken me a while to get round to responding to these nominations. Sorry. Please check out Charley and Deanna’s lovely blogs to help make up for my tardiness.

Thank_you cat gif


The Rules:

1. Thank and link to the blogger who nominated you.
2. Answer the 7 questions the nomination has provided.
3. Nominate 7 other bloggers.
4. Create 7 questions for your nominees.

I’m going to “bend” the rules. To stop this post becoming ridiculously long, I’m going to answer the first 4 of Charley’s 7 questions and the last 3 of Deanna’s.


1. What is the best book you’ve ever read?

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Writing progress 15 June 2015 (JuNoWriMo Challenge)

I came through on my promise about the chocolate fudge cake! If you haven’t checked it out yet, go here now. 🙂

Enough with chocolate (ah, but can you ever have enough?)! Back to the writing…

Snoopy peanuts cartoon even typwriter hates stories

If you follow my ramblings, you’ll know that 2 weeks ago I sent the first 3 chapters of my first novel, Art and Soul, to 5 literary agents. In week one post-submission, I got 1 rejection. In week two, I got another.

Wait! There’s more. Click for my JuNoWriMo 2015 writing challenge update!

Writing progress 8 June 2015 (JuNoWriMo challenge)

There will be chocolate fudge cake here next week, I promise! I’m a bit behind with my posts. In the meantime…

Snoopy writer on rejection cartoon peanutsLast week I submitted sample chapters of my first novel, Art and Soul, to five literary agents.

I already have my first rejection.

Wait! There’s more. Click for my JuNoWriMo 2015 writing challenge update!

Writing update and JuNoWriMo 2015

Last week I finally submitted sample chapters of my contemporary romance novel, Art and Soul, to some literary agents. AND the dreaded synopsis and covering letters.

The Battle for the Writer's Mind Cartoon

Eek!

So, from everything I have read from other writers, I believe I now have six-eight weeks to wait before receiving my first round of rejections! Can’t wait!

 

 

 

Wait! There’s more. Click for my JuNoWriMo 2015 writing challenge update!