It’s now come to that time when my beta read feedback has started to roll in, and yes, it is scary! It is one of those bitter sweet pills that you know you have to take to get better, but you just can’t force yourself to swallow. The thing is, you put so much into writing a story, that you need to have broad shoulders when it is criticised. It hurts to hear what people have to say when it isn’t all good. You need to steel yourself though, because getting the feedback and honestly analysing what is being said, is critical to making your story, a great story.
I have to admit, I couldn’t help myself…I had to go through some of the responses while I await the final few to be returned. The key for me, is to keep an open mind and decide if I agree with the feedback or if I think it is just the readers preference. I particularly look for similar comments that appear from different people, as these are the easy ones to identify as issues to be looked at (but I note, this is easier to do once all the feedback is returned). Once I have read the feedback I’ve received, I find it easier if I put it aside, let it sit for a week or so while I stew things over, and then I can return to it without the same emotional response and a clearer mind.
After reading the feedback I have so far, I know my novel is still not ready to be released. I was hoping to publish before Christmas, but it isn’t worth publishing something that isn’t ready, so, I sat down and had a think. I have considered if I should spend the next few months completing the final draft, or if I should get on board with NaNoWriMo this week and use it to start the second book in the series. I think Nano may be the better option, because I would like to be a substantial way into writing book two when I publish the first book. I don’t want to keep people waiting too long if they like book one.
What do you think? Any advice for a new author?