So I didn’t get my full-on edit letter yesterday, as I thought. Instead, we sat down over lunch – and in a conference room for nearly five hours and hashed over the universe I’d built, the special powers that I’d given to certain characters, and how we could simplify all of this to make it a lot easier to follow.
The general agreement (among my editors and the fans who gave feedback on the contest site) is that the book was fun and unique and romantic and thrilling and they loved, loved, loved the characters, but some of the fantastical elements were hard to follow and at times seemed contradictory.
And that’s not ideal. You don’t want a reader to stop in the middle of a page and feel like they’re lost. It’s jarring. And while my magical rules make perfect sense to me (most of them anyway – some even I was a little fuzzy on), I may not be explaining them well and in some cases, they were unnecessary and cluttered things up.
So I came out of that meeting with a partial loss of my title, two very, VERY changed major characters, two enormous plot twists tossed in the garbage can, and a very different endgame for my lead character. I also pushed back on one of the changes, and brought them back to seeing it the way I felt it should be and we agreed to let that one element stay.
And now I get to figure out how and where I’m cutting and reworking and adding in and this thing will morph into something new. Then I get my edit letter. And I rewrite some more.
See that picture above? That’s me this weekend, and I try to wrap my brain around it all. As crazy as all of that sounds, it got seeds germinating and I’m really looking forward to where this is going. I’m just wondering if there’s enough caffeine and sugar in the world to get me there.
I’ll keep you posted…