Editing my novel

I’m editing my novel “Stranger or Friend” for the … ‘oh, I lost count’ time.

The story started to percolate in my head more than three years ago. A story loosely based on accounts from Eastern European immigrants, like myself, but at the core, a mystery.

I wrote every day for five months, made correction, deleted chapters, added new chapters, went through a good round of edits then submitted to the critique group.  

As is the case with critique groups (and I love mine) you get an abundance of opinions and must be careful not to end up with an entirely different novel from what you’d set out to write. That said, I benefited tremendously from critiques received on the IWW’s Novels List http://www.internetwritingworkshop.org/

After months of more writing and revising, the manuscript went to a dear friend, also a writer, who loved it and had a few comments. I emailed the first three chapters (extremely important) to a few friends who offered what we writers also need in great measure – a few ideas and lots of love and encouragement.

Now I am going through the last set of changes before the manuscript goes to a developmental editor.  

What comes after that? Well, depending on what the editor says, maybe — just maybe — I’ll muster up the courage to send my story (my baby) out into the world.

Fingers crossed.

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14 responses to “Editing my novel

  1. Silvia, I know what you mean about critiques. We need them and we have to listen, but at the same time, we are in control of what we keep and change in the end. Good luck sending it out. The best advice I’ve had was from a business major. Market your book as a ‘product’ not as something precious to your heart. If it’s rejected, turn around and write another one. That’s what I intend to do (I’m still revising). Saw you on the A to Z blog. All the best :)

    • Sharon, what wise advice. Yes, we must remain somewhat detached when sending out work. The editors are treating it as a product. Helps to remember that. Thanks for stopping by. Look forward to visiting your blog. PS: Think I got the first week of A to Z covered. :)

  2. What a great post, Silvia. It’s so good to know that all of us spend months and many iterations with our beloved novels, and certainly good to hear your process.

  3. Yes, the Internet Writing Workshop is a great place to receive feedback and sometimes a challenge when critiques contradict each other. No better way to prepare for sending your books out into the world. Wish you great success with Stranger or Friend.

  4. I loved reading the parts pertaining to before we ‘met’ on IWW, Silvia. Always wondered where your wonderful story came from. It sounds like you’ve done all the right things to get this baby birthed. I wish you nothing but success. I can’t wait to have the completed version in hand!

  5. Here through the A to Z Challenge – loved your post on their blog.

    I think encouragement is very important and the fact that you’ve got that far is a motivation for me to keep writing at my novel – I’m at my first draft.
    It’s important to see others’ road, see what and how they accomplished their goals and motivational.

    Thanks for sharing!

  6. I think having a critique group is so important. I know mine has helped me dig deeper into my story and characters and make it all that much better. But, yes, in the end, it still has to remain *your* story. Good luck with this, Silvia!

  7. I love this post, Silvia, and I’m happy to see that you mentioned IWW. What would writers do without the help of all those extra eyes?

I welcome your thoughts.

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