Monday, February 28, 2011

Another Humbling Experience


The further my beta readers get into my book, the more they’ve found to change. I’m shocked that I ever thought it was done. Now I see how foolishly prideful I was to think I didn't need beta readers. Even experienced and published authors still have critique partners.

What surprises me the most about this experience is that no matter how much I change, it’s still the same book. The themes are the same, the characters, the plot – everything good that I loved about this book is still there. The only difference is that the numerous weaknesses in the book are slowly being whittled away.

A big part of the reason I didn’t want beta readers was that I secretly didn’t want to change my book. I liked it the way it was, and the very idea of turning it upside down and inside out was terrifying. It takes courage, I think, to do major revisions.

I like to save my rough drafts because when I start making huge changes, I’m afraid I’ll put forth hours of effort and end up with a butchered book. But I haven’t done a single revision that I regretted afterwards, and I always end up deleting the old draft.

People complain about revisions left and right, but personally, I think there's nothing like seeing your book go from shoddy to polished. It's exciting.

5 comments:

  1. Love the picture.

    and Her book still rocks

    that is all....

    :)

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  2. Here's something to add to your excitement even more: http://brookerbusse.blogspot.com/2011/02/two-birds-one-stone-or-post.html You deserve it. ^^

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  3. I'm excited about getting to the stage when I can send my book out to beta-readers. But I do need to get it to a point first where I feel like I've done all I personally can on it.

    It will be scary to send it out, but exhilarating too.

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  4. Thanks, Brooke! I'm truly flattered. I'm going to give out awards soon, once there's a gap in my posting schedule.

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  5. I agree with you about how it's still the same book even though you revise. I like to look at professional artists--they often do lots of preliminary sketches and models before they start what will be the final project. Sometimes as writers we get attached to our early versions when they're just preparation for the final piece.

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