The idea for today’s post came from Robin Bielman’s blog. She’s going to be in L.A. Mitchell’s blog carnival on Wednesday. The theme is time, and Robin asked for ideas. I started to comment and as I finished the third paragraph, I realized I had my blog for today. This was something I’d been thinking about even before reading Robin’s blog. Below are the first three paragraphs I pulled from Robin’s comments. Anything after that, I’m winging it.
Time to send or time to wait or time to pet the cat. No, no, not the last one, though she’s crawling all over me. (Five minutes later, the cat is gone. So, it was time to pet the cat after all.)
My manuscript is finished. I revised it twice — plus revisions as I wrote it — before sending to CPs and a beta reader. I got it back from one CP and changed per her suggestions. My other CP finished the first hundred pages. Same thing. I have the beta reader’s critique and need to go through it. But when I’m done, I still won’t be ready to query. I’ll print it out and give it one last read-through to make sure the corrections didn’t cause more problems, even though everything in me is clamoring to send it NOW.
Plus, I have the characters from my next book whispering in my mind. They want their story told. I know once you’ve sold and have a deadline, it’s different. You send it in to make the deadline, and editors don’t expect it to be perfect — though I’m sure they’d love it. But if you haven’t sold yet, I think it’s best to iron out possible problems before sending it out. I’m not talking about perfect grammar or a few awkward sentences, but hitches that might make the agent or editor stop reading, with puzzled frowns on their faces as they wonder if that would really happen. Since I’m writing a paranormal, I have some weird stuff going on and I don’t want anyone stopping.
So, I’m practicing the one thing I hate most about this business. Patience.
I know some writers who read their book aloud. I can’t do that. It would take too long, and I don’t have that much patience. Others just read dialogue out loud. I don’t do that, either, though I do hear the voices in my head. Some writers read the book backwards to catch problems. I’m sure that would work, but the idea of doing that gives me same feeling as doing my taxes.
What do you do when you reach this stage? Send it out or do the extra read like I’m doing? Or do you do even more reads?