So, I’ve been a little quiet on the blogging front– been trying to really focus on working with my critique partners. Determined to get through all of our MSes by the summertime! One special CP of mine is blazing through my chapters, so that gives me hope that I’ll be able to query my revised MS this summer. Super exciting– I could talk about my feelings about that for hours.
But speaking of querying, I thought I’d go back to Like a Virgin 2014! The contest officially ended May 2nd. I mentioned previously that I’d made it to the finals, surprisingly enough (And I won 3rd Place! This deserves its own blog entry…). But then, once I posted my revised entry, I got a request! This was of course amazing, and I’m incredibly thankful, but it was also terrifying. My MS was (and still is not) in any way ready for submission! Haha
So, I spent all of last week through yesterday blazing through my MS and making changes. Revising is such an odd thing– sometimes, I just go into the word document and do a line by line directly. This time, though, I printed it out and handmarked my comments. It was more time-consuming but I think I looked at the MS differently and it definitely needed that. Finished processing all of my changes today.
Reading the printed copy also showed me a few of my weaknesses. For one, I think I took cutting to be the solution to all of my problems: my issues with previous drafts were because I wasn’t being concise enough and was taking too long to say things. As a friend reminded me, yes, you cut– but then you still have to add interesting stuff back in! In my latest exchange, a universal complaint has been a lack of worldbuilding, setting, etc. And I completely get it. I’ve gone back to revise for that issue but I think it crops back up in later chapters, even after my last round of revisions. So I’ll have to address that more fully at some point.
Worldbuilding is such an interesting thing. I’d been so obsessed with stripping all unnecessary exposition and making the read as quick as possible that I think I uprooted important parts of the text. ARGH! Would love any and all thoughts, etc.
Anyway, thankfully I saw a response from the organizers on twitter that we can take our time to respond to requests. So, WHEW! I plan on taking my time– I probably won’t respond to them until the summer, when I start re-querying. I think my batteries need a recharge: I have no juice to write my other WIP, either. (Currently at 12.5K) I think I’m just going to focus on critiquing and reading now that I’m not in a rush to revise my MS– that’ll be a nice change of pace.
I also have a gym pledge and going to the gym always gets me back in shape (pun intended), as hard as it is to stick with.
As far as what I’m reading: I’m rereading Divergent (which inspired my last major rewrite and conversion back to First Person POV) and still going through Darkest Minds. Both have been super-helpful so far– I think I just need to take some time to think about what they’re doing and how I can apply that to my own writing. I’m also looking for other good MG/YA to read, if anyone has any recs. One pledge I had was that for every book with a mainstream (read: white) MC, I’d read another with a diverse MC. I’m on amazon now to find some for purchase– thankfully, diversityinya has been super-awesome for finding things.
Alright, I’m hungry. Over and out!