Monday, June 30, 2008

Seeking Advice from Writers and Readers

As you know, if you read this blog closely enough, I’m working on my first novel. Early feedback from trusted readers and rejection letters centered on the beginning of the book being a bit too slow. I’ll admit, I agreed and did a rewrite wherein I made a lot of cuts and picked up the first half quite a bit. Then I had the opportunity to submit it to an editor at a major publishing house who rejected it saying the beginning read too fast and needed more nuance! Now I notice that the Publishers Weekly review of the old draft (through the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest) actually praised the first half.

I don’t know what to do. Do I keep working from the new draft or go back to the old draft? I’m so confused. Any fellow writers out there had any similar experiences? This is one of those rare moments I wish I were in a writer's group.

If anyone wants to do a Pepsi Challenge, I can point you to the first 5000 words of the old draft and the new draft, both available online if you know where to look. Email me.

(photo credit)

1 comment:

  1. I was speaking to a young playwright yesterday. I told him that the process of progressing as a writer is a process primarily of learning to trust one's self. I would elaborate, but this would just feed into artists' tendency to overcomplicate things. Trust yourself. That is all.


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In 1789, the governor of Australia granted land and some animals to James Ruse in an experiment to see how long it would take him to support himself. Within 15 months he had become self sufficient. The area is still known as Experiment Farm. This is my Experiment Farm to see how long it will take me to support myself by writing.