Monday, April 9, 2012
The Start of Something Good
A big reason I haven't been blogging as much is because since December, I've been consumed by a project. It's the book that I wrote in two weeks (at 75k then, almost 90k now), and I LOVE IT. When the idea came to me, I let it percolate for two days before deciding to give into it. When I did, I didn't look back until it was finished.
I spent about two months editing and making this book better. I've loved every single book I've written (and for the record, that's seven) even the bad ones, but this one felt different. I was consumed with it when I was writing it, and I hoped that my first readers would feel the same.
My husband is my first reader, so when I printed out the book and gave it to him to read, I was nervous. What if this good feeling was for naught? What if he hated it or thought it was my worst book ever? I needed him to think this book was good.
And you know what? He did. He told me he thought stylistically it was my best yet, but then as he started getting to the bones of the story, he found ways to help me make things better, and he even called me one day and told me he'd been thinking about my novel all day and how to fix an issue I was working on.
This is all great, and I'm glad I'm not married to someone, who lack for a better term, won't blow smoke up my ass. So, I fixed the things my husband found, and sent the first chapters to my critique partner, Kelly, who had been excited to read this book ever since I told her about it. I sent her my first three chapters and tried not to think much about it.
When she sent me her notes back, they were similar to my husband's. She loved it! Of course, like my husband, she found issues, but she told me it was my best book yet, and couldn't wait to read more. During our weekly gchat session, she tried to get me to tell her bits and bobs of the storyline, and I couldn't help but smile to myself.
Did Kelly and my husband love my previous book, a quiet, issue based contemporary YA? Yep. But this book, they both think, has something. The kind of quality that pulls you in and won't let you go. I knew this book had it while I was writing it, but hearing your first readers say the same thing is such a great first step.
I was going to query my contemporary YA, but I've decided to hold off until this book is finished. If only convincing potential agents and editors would be so easy! ;)
Have you had one idea that stood apart from others? Is it the book you're querying, or queried?