Wow, so it’s been *checks calendar* one year, five months and twenty six days since I last updated. Where to begin? I got back the manuscript from my friend who graciously edited it for me and then took months to go through that. After that was done, I sent it to a professional editor for a developmental edit.
The feedback that she gave me was great but it also posed a massive dilemma. She thought that I should basically change the entire structure of the novel and approach it differently. That was August last year. I thought about this for quite some time and came up with an approach for the new structure but really struggled with it.
Finally, around November, I started to edit it with the new structure. I immediately disliked it, I literally lost interest in my own story as I was writing it. I was worried that maybe I was just too attached to the original way that I’d written it and couldn’t look at it objectively.
I sent copies of both the original version of the first and second chapters and the new, edited version of the first chapter (the new structure involved moving the original first chapter to later in the book and starting with the second chapter) to a few friends and every single one of them came back with the same response. They liked the new version but they loved the old version. It was definitely a feeling of vindication for me but also just a relief to have the confirmation that other readers felt the same way that I did.
I had two weeks off work over Christmas and got hardcore into editing and re-writing the book. I left the structure the same way it was originally but definitely took on board a lot of the other suggestions that my editor had made. It gave me an opportunity to really re-think certain aspects and make the whole novel better (hopefully!). The delay has also given me the opportunity to make some critical changes to at least one of the characters that I’m glad could be included from book one.
I wrote a sneak peek into Heather’s life as well and added that to the end of the book. One of my favourite scenes from The Album, well, the scene that I had in my brain for a very long time but from her perspective. It’s just a snippet and not actually going to be part of The Wedding but it’s something that I wanted to write for a long time just to see how Heather reacted.
Anyway, the book will go back to her now for a copyedit and then I will FINALLY be ready for publishing. I can’t wait. It feels really, really weird right now. You know that feeling when you finish reading a book? It’s like that but multiplied exponentially. In the last 24 hours, I’ve re-read the entire book and tweaked it here and there and it finally feels done. I don’t think there are any scenes that I need to add to this story to make it complete and as much as I would like to spend more time in Ariana and Gabriel’s world, I’m ready to explore Heather and Harrison’s lives now.