It is with some trepidation that I sit down to write a blog post. Not just any blog post, but my first since May 22, 2016. At that time I had decided that almost three years of BATTLE OF THE BANDS was enough for me. I also decided that I needed a break from blogging in general. I never intended to stay away this long, but ‘you know how it is’ one thing led to another and here we are and it’s October 5, 2016, almost 5 months later.
Severe health issues kept me from enjoying the summer here in Tahoe as I would have liked, but I do have a nice deck and a great chair where I spent a lot of time reading and sunning myself while recuperating. Hopefully, that is all in the past and I will be able to get on with my life and back to some of the things I really enjoy.
Anyway…what better place to start than with ‘The Insecure Writer’s Support Group’, a place where writers come together to vent their insecurities and lend a supportive hand to each other. I hope my thoughts will be well received, but if not, well, I’m not going to let that bother me too much. I tend to be a weirdo like that and have learned to be more secure in who I am.
Before we get into it, I want to express my thanks and direct you to the blog for the IWSG. TO FIND IT CLICK HERE Please stop by and check out the list of other participants (there are quite a few, I’m now number 250 on the list), also don’t forget to thank Mr. Cavanaugh for his efforts in our behalf, and the other dedicated folks who are helping out this month.
The QUESTIONS for this month is: How do you know when your book is ready?
As I first read that I misinterpreted it to mean, ‘How do you know when your book is finished?’ and for me that’s easy. All three of my WIP’s have begun as a piece of flash fiction or short story that is the actual ending for my story. Strange, I know, but that’s just me, for some reason the real inspiration comes from wanting to know ‘the rest of the story’ once I have an ending.
Be that as it may; that was not the question. So, I have to admit that I’m not sure how to really, Really, REALLY know when your book is ready. I know that with the story that is closest to my heart, I keep going over it and making little changes, all in the hopes of making it better. I believe the basic story to be good, but fear that I'm not telling in well enough for others to enjoy.
I know I need input from other sources (beta readers), but this is an area where I have not had good luck. Several people have disappointed me by offering to trade WIP’s and do critiques. Now, I’m not beyond reproach here, as there have been two where I let the other writer down and did not finish a critique for them (but in fairness to me, neither did they). On the other hand there have been a few where I did a complete critique, and in one case more than one, and have still not yet received any word at all on my first five chapters. Oh well, such is life.
There have been favorable responses and a few suggestions for changes from close friends and family, but it’s hard to trust that they are being completely honest, and simply not wanting to hurt my feelings.
My honest conclusion is that I probably need to fork over the money for some professional editing/critique to know for sure if my work is ready to be pushed to agents and publishing houses.
I am interested to troll around the IWSG blogs today and through the rest of this week, to see what helpful suggestions other have to offer. Alas, the purpose of the IWSG. Looks like I picked a good month to return.
Not yet ready to commit to a regular blogging schedule, but I am trying to make a comeback and promise to post something else this month. If I start out slow (posting twice a month), I may be able to keep up and eventually figure out a more regular posting schedule. Until that time…Happy Trails!