Friday, 14 March 2008

Third Draft Completed!

Sorry to barge in on a Coffee Break day but I just want share the news that I've just finished my third draft rewrite of my first novel! Woo hoo!!

I'm printing it out as I type this post.

I plan on having a break before reading it to see if it's okay. Then I'll decide if it needs a fourth rewrite. (I don't think it needs one - I'm just a bit nervous of the next stage).

But what now? On to that nerve wracking next stage of course!

Cal thinks I should start sending it out now and I think I agree with her. It's such a scary stage I'm at. Sending my 'baby' out there into the big wide world.

Any advice on sending out a MS for the first time would be gratefully received. Thank you in advance.


JJ said...

Oh wow, A.Writer, that is fab news. Well done.

L-Plate Author said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
L-Plate Author said...

Hey, AWriter a huge cogratulations!!! I finished my draft last week but have left it for a week and am having a read through it now to see if everything ties in with what I was thinking at the time.

Cal's told me to get mine out there too so I'm at the moment printing out three chapters of each of my books and I'm going to send them out. Even though in the back of my mind, I know that I need to read them both through again as it all changes from draft to draft. But it wil take ages for agents to get back to me, if at all, so I feel like I should send them out now.

I know you read my blog so you'll know I've been at this stage for a couple of weeks now, so my advice is to you, and to myself really.

SEND IT OUT! Open a bottle of something nice, mine is Southern Comfort on ice, and celebrate. You have completed a book. Well done you. Am so chuffed for you! It's a great feeling, isn't it. xx

Leigh said...

Very many congratulations! Well done!

Personally, I would take a few weeks off before sending it out. But sure, get it out there!


B.E. Sanderson said...

:hugs: Congratulations!

The only advice I can give re: sending a MS out for the first time is: Look at the whole process with hopeful pessimism. (Or is it cautious optimism?) Either way, reserve a bit of yourself, so if the unthinkable happens and you get rejected, it doesn't hurt as much. For me, each manuscript submission gets easier, but the first round of submissions nearly did me in because I was too sure I was going to sell right away.

Graeme K Talboys said...

You are right to take a break and then re-read it. Give it a couple of weeks, feet up, glass of wine.

If, after that, you feel it is OK, start sending it out. Test the water. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. And although rejections are hard to face, remember it is subjective. Anyone who can finish a novel and then do rewrites is taking their craft seriously. Don't try to get it perfect.

Decisions on whether an agent (or publisher) is interested are beyond our ken, but make sure you sort out a decent covering letter. That and the first few pages are what is going to grab an agent's attention. If they like it they will ask for more. If they really like it they will be prepared to work with you to get it polished.

Congratulations. And good luck.

Lazy Perfectionista said...

Congratulations! And a big bucket of good luck!

A. Writer said...

Thank you all so much! xx

NoviceNovelist said...

Well done - great news. I would enjoy the elation of making it to the finishing post- as per the nods above - have a celebratory drink. Leave it to stew for a bit - get someone to read the whole thing as a complete read (if you can!) read it yourself. If there are only minor quibbles with it after this - SEND IT. You don't want to tinker too much because it's highly likely that whoever takes it on will want to tinker under the hood anyway! Do your research and draw up a shortlist of agents - do a brill cover letter and Go for it!!!

Lucy Diamond said...

Well done - fab news! I am definitely in the leave-it-to-stew camp - I always try to leave a ms for a few weeks then come back to it fresh for a final final tweak before sending anywhere.
In the meantime, check out the Writers And Artists Yearbook, and draw up a shortlist of agents, then find out everything you can about them before you start sending. They often ask for different things - some want just 3 chapters and a synopsis, some might ask for just a chapter. Definitely worth getting this bit right, you don't want to start off on the wrong foot!
From Pitch to Publication by Carole Blake is a very helpful book - lots of great advice about the whole process.
VERY BEST OF LUCK! And keep us posted xx

A. Writer said...

Thank you so much. All the advice is really appreciated.

In celebration of finishing the draft I have a big pizza being delivered any moment now and I went out this afternoon and bought three books.

Thank you all again! xx

Fiona said...

Fantastic! How many people do that? That is some advert for, I don't know - probably life insurance - that goes on about all the things most people promise themselves they'll get round to doing. Writing a novel being one of them - and they never do it.

wordtryst said...

Congratulations! This is a major milestone.

I second Graeme's advice: I'd add that once you decide to send it out, you need to work on that synopsis, because it's a lot more challenging that it appears, and it's best to have it ready since an agent or publisher who requests a partial or complete manuscript will want the synopsis too.

And I'll also echo the sentiments re rejections. You don't take them personally. They're just part of the process.

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

That's a fantastic achievement and I'm envious, being only about half way through my own.

Ask yourself this: How long have I spent on it? What's a few more days? Take a break. Get it the best you can get it, then definitely send it out.

Good luck.

Debs said...

Congratulations. I would also let is stew for a bit then come back to it afresh and if there are mistakes they will probably be glaring (or is that just my writing).

Best of luck.

Rowan Coleman said...

Well done!! I agree with Lucy, her advice is good - don't send the whole thing in one go and make sure you have a brilliant synopsis - almost like the blurb on the back of book, but a bit longer, that sums up what its about and makes it easy for the reader to get into your idea. Also I'd say only submit to agents. Publishers do read unsolicited submissions but it takes a lot longer and with a good agent backing you you will have a much greater chance of getting published. Ooh and you probably know this, but double space your ms and secure pages only with an elastic band. Don't worry about fancy binding or any of that lark. Plus it probably is a good idea to take a couple of weeks so you can read it through with a fresh eye. If you want any more info/advice message me direct on facebook or myspace. Good luck!

A. Writer said...

Thank you all! You wonderful wonderful people!

And Rowan, thank you! I will be taking you up on your offer no doubt! It is much appreciated!!!

liz fenwick said...

Just catching up here. WTG!!! I'm thrilled for you!

A. Writer said...

Thank you Liz!