Does This Novel Look Good On Me?

How do you edit something that you hate?

Okay, hate is a strong word. But I can’t find a better one to take its place. I’m starting the second round of edits for BLOOD OF WOLVES after two weeks of skirting the damned thing. And, urk.

Some history: most of the novel was written during 2010, and a first pass edit, which took about as long, took place during 2011, half of which occured before Viable Paradise, half after. Once done, I handed it over to my writing group for a beta read, got feedback from them by end of February. Let it sit until June (for a bunch of reasons, no doubt in part from fear).

Now I’m back to it, having pushed the first two chapters out to a second beta. It’s time to make this edit as much a part of my regular, daily progress as the draft for STAR DOOR is.

And I hate it. It’s the piece of clothing I bought two years ago that I loved-loved-loved. It was hot, it looked good on me, wearing it was as much treat as indulgement. And now I look at it, hanging in the cost half-hidden by the clothes in regular rotation and I can see how dated it is. It makes me cringe to think I ever paid for it, let alone walked out of the house with it on. What was I thinking?

These chapters are terrible. Kudos to my writing group for the sacrifice of their time in reading it. The only shred of hope I have left is that, once I get to the halfway mark, I’ll see a marked improvement in the editing (and thus prose) in the second half, worked on after Viable Paradise. (A greater worry is that I won’t.)

If this was a short story, I’d be okay with trunking it. But two years and 120,000 words is a lot to give up on, especially when I still love the characters, the conflict, and the world that came with it.

It’s one of the summer projects, and slog through it I will. It’s gotta get better. And if it doesn’t, I gotta make it better. Simple as that.

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2 thoughts on “Does This Novel Look Good On Me?

  1. At least you’re not alone: The timeline for the novel I’m still working on is almost exactly the same, though I feel *so close* now. But still, it’s a lot of years.

    1. Steph

      The good news in all of this is that it won’t take me that long to write the next novel. I’m already halfway through in about three months time, and I think that draft reads a hell of a lot better than this one. That might also be novel-drafting puppy-love. Hope not, but we’ll see!

      But, yeah two years! Does that make our WIPs toddlers? (Insert obvious ‘terrible-twos’ joke here.)

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