Over Christmas, I gave my husband the bound copy of my novel and asked that he be a beta reader. I was surprised to find that he's an excellent editor. Don't read that the wrong way, my husband's very smart and has writerly aspirations as well, but I was worried that he may be a little too soft on me. He definitely wasn't. He pointed out things that rang false to him as a reader, grammar/tense issues, and worked with me to help make the book better.
I've read stories of authors having to rewrite books multiple times to suit an editor, or those that query for ages before finding an agent. Of course I hope that when I query my manuscript will be in tip-top shape and I'll get an agent and my book will sell a few months later. But I'm also prepared for the work. One of my favorite quotes about writing is by Richard Bach:
"A professional writer is an amateur who didn't quit."
I like to tell myself I won't quit, not even if I query a project to have it be rejected, or suffer some issues later in the process. Prepare for the worst, but hope for the best, right?
How badly do you want it? How far along are you in your journey towards publication?