Friday, January 7, 2011

Sending it Out into the World...What if...?

So...I've got this neat little WIP. I've worked and worked on it to make it shine. Well, shine in my opinion. It's time to get it out of my computer and get it into the hands of a CP.

Here's the scary part. Well, the first scary part. I've worked and worked on this short story. I love the characters and feel like they are not only a part of me, but a part of my family. I've heard some authors say their books are like their children. I wouldn't say Tory and River are my children, but rather some damn sexy men I got out of the closet.

I've known the sting of working on a story and polishing the diamond only to find it's a very clean turd. Blunt, but the truth. I hate working on something and finding out there is a huge plot hole or a gigantic TSTL moment or something in it. Drives me crazy.

So, I'm scared. I love Tory, but I'm uncertain that he doesn't come off a little too good to be true. It's possible, but will readers buy into his feelings. And then there's River. This guy has been put through the ringer at the hands of another person. I want to make sure the reader feels his feelings and can understand him. I want them to like both men.

(I'm shaking a little here.) So, out into the world it goes.

How do you deal with the stress? Ladies? I'm asking you, too. How do you cope and feel less twitchy when the work you've slaved over has gone out to be picked apart?

I'm game to know, so I can at least keep myself occupied. (Well, the boys have offered several creative suggestions, and I'm completely open to trying the suggestions, but that's neither here nor there.)


Mysti Holiday said...

I'm terrified. Every time. And it never gets easier.

That probably wasn't very comforting, was it?


Christa Paige said...

Wow, great question. I have been told by a few author friends I rely way too much on my crit team. Yup, team- I have my mom read it cause I know she will be honest and tell me if it sucks. I have another published author read it to make sure I didn't commit any huge publishing/editing sins. I have a reader pal who has a great idea of what to look for in the story and will tell me in blunt statements if I screwed up. Finally, after all that, I have a friend who is an editor for the government, take a red-line through all my creative commas.

That doesn't answer your question about what to do when it is in CP. My biggest suggestion is: Don't tinker with it. Wait until the first draft comes back. If you must open the doc, write notes on a notepad so you can refer to them on the new document that the CP returns to you. Nothing like having two files to compare and contrast, grrr. Second, don't watch twitter feeds about pals who write, read-through, send in and get contracts. I don't know about you, but this always makes me feel like a slacker. Did you know Maya Banks never has anyone crit her stuff? She writes it and sends it in to her editor. I'd love to be that confident in my work.

How to deal with the red-lines that are returned? Usually, I try to envision the worst so when I open the file, I am surprised that the whole thing isn't bleeding. Also, know that some of the things will be opinion based and not set in stone. Usually, I waffle about those for a bit, then end up revising so we both like them.

Finally, it is often said by editors that having something in the wings is a good idea. So, start writing something else, even if it is a scribbled out opening of a new novel in a new genre. You will feel productive while you wait.

Last cases scenario? Well, I have my third vamp novel at the editor friend right now and you can come over and do shooters with me. I'll make some orange fifty-five jello shooters with whipped cream and every time one us stresses about: does it suck, can I write, is the story good, I'm totally clich├ęd, I'm an average writer....we can indulge in a shooter. Pretty soon, at least for me, my mind will be on other things and for a while, I can forget about the whole crit process. LOL
Thanks for sharing this post today. I usually read the entries in Google Reader but had to click through to reply, cause, well you really aren't alone in the waiting game anxiousness.

Janice said...

I'll admit sometimes I can't look at the critiques when I get them back, especially when my critique group or partner said they were real hard on me. Yikes!

Megan Slayer said...

Mysti, nope, not comforting, except that you're if you get nervous, then I'm not so off the mark.

Christa, thanks for all the advice. Great comment. I've got something in the wings and I'm still scared and there is no way I am as confident as Maya Banks. If I was, well...nah, that won't happen.

Janice, that's what I'm scared of most. The CP will say they've been hard on it because I really dropped the ball. Oy...

Thanks ladies, you all rock!!