Thursday, October 2, 2008


I've got a few close friends and family reading my novel at the moment. I know it would probably be helpful to have another writer read my stuff, but this is where I'm comfortable at the moment. The people reading it are extremely well-read and intelligent, so I really value their opinions.

The problem is when things aren't working, but there isn't a really definable reason. Everyone makes general comments that this part was their least favorite, etc., but no one knows why. Like with my first chapter. I realize that this is a critically important chapter, both as I'm searching for agents/publishers, but also eventually for potential purchasers. The pacing works, I think, as does the characterization, logical development, etc. But, I still feel like something is off...and I'm having a hard time moving on to the rest of my book with that stupid first chapter hanging there. 

Writer's block? I suppose. I've revised the dumb thing several times, and it has improved, for sure. I've also been super busy with other life stuff. Hopefully, I'll be able to sit down tomorrow and sparkle it. (Yes, I made that up--"sparkle" is a noun. Way to go you grammar hound you).

Status: slightly loopy


Anthony said...

I would say your instincts are correct. That you need to expand your beta reader list to a writer or two.

It is sometime difficult to listen to the writer inner voice. Mine usually is telling me "more chocolate please."

VinceInAZ said...

My wife, too, is an aspiring writer in the multi-draft stage. Choosing to write a first novel is not cause to confess. It's wonderful that you are taking this step. You are reaching out to grab hold of a dream. It isn't easy.

Is there any chance of seeing a chapter, to give a literary critique? I realize the level of trust you would need, and that I have not had a chance to establish any at all, but having been through this with my wife, I'd like to offer my literary talents.

Great gobs of good luck to you in your venture. Please keep us posted on your progress at your blog site!

Christina said...

Sometimes having writers read your work is helpful, sometimes it's not. I noticed that sometimes when a writer reads my work, I'm giving a list of ways to rewrite my book, and when that happens, the plot I had deemed writing is no longer there.

I've had some great writer friends who have also pointed out exactly what isn't working and why it doesn't work, which is so helpful in the rewrites.

Good luck with the first chapter. They are so easy to get snagged on. Are you in edits or are you still on the first draft? I'm stuck on a few first drafts. I think I'll just have to go ahead and start editing one story and hope I find a solution to the end.