But, I am making progress elsewhere.
My best friend is starting to send me her revision suggestions for "Hearts Remembering", and the list is LONG. Four pages worth of stuff for ONE chapter alone, and reminders to take it easy with various things she's noticed I have a terrible habit of repeating. She's also noticed I missed a word here and there, or put the wrong word in - correctly spelled but one or two letters away from the word I was meaning to use.
That's good. I knew it needed work. A lot of work.
Overall, she liked the story. That's good. She likes my style, and has told me what I should be keeping, because it's so power packed with a description that gave her a really cool mental picture of the scene.
I don't care how much Bestie cracks the whip with the editing and revisions... I'm seeing a LOT of what she's saying, even before she brings it up during our chats in Facebook or on the phone (three or four hours minimum - we're on opposite coasts, thank heavens for great long distance plans!). She's worried she's being too picky, but I NEED to hear this kind of stuff, that way I know what *not* to do when I'm writing the next manuscript, and what I should look out for while editing and revising future works.
Something came up in our last couple of phone calls and our talks on the messenger... She read parts of the original version of this manuscript, and could not believe I had sent it out to publishers in *that* condition. It needed sooooooooo much work, yet I was convinced - by *what* is between me, her and my word processor - it was "perfect" as I was going to get it at that time. I know now that had I listened to my gut instead of outside influences, I may have been published by now.
Yes, I could have self published it the way it was after the rejections, BUT if I had done that, my career as an author would have been pretty much over.
One big thing I've learned in the last year and a half or so is that when you self publish, the story, the editing, *EVERYTHING* has to be PERFECT. The story concept has to be perfect, unique and attract the right readers, the editing has to be the epitome of perfection, and so does the writing itself. If any of those things, or pretty much anything else is even the tiniest bit "off", the majority of readers out there - that don't know you and couldn't care less about your feelings - will never buy or read another book of yours ever again, even if you publish the perfect book a week later. You will fall flat on your face and never recover from it.
It's sad, but that's what you get for being so impatient if you're not willing to learn and grow as a writer.
All I'm going to say is that I'm just glad I didn't listen to outside influences when it came to self publishing my stuff.
And yes, for the record, "Hearts Remembering" IS the revamp of what used to be "No Regrets"... I've culled the fat (removed all passive stuff), compressed descriptions, changed things around, and wrote it the ORIGINAL way I had planned to back in 2010 when this story was first conceived. It's not even half as long as the original version was - although I do include references to "before" - and to me, it's sooooooooooo much better. Anyone who has read the original version of it will be able to see huge changes in my style, and everything else in the rewrite.... If it ever comes out that is...
I do have a list of publishers in mind for its submission, but none of them will be seeing it for a while yet. It's far from ready, and I don't think it will go out until spring at the absolute earliest. I want this one to be perfect, from commas being in the correct place, and all of the dots on the Is to the crosses on the Ts.
I think between Bestie, myself and the rest of my beta readers, we can do it.
I also sent Bestie a copy of "Family Portraits", which had been written as a sequel to "No Regrets", before I learned what the market standards *REALLY* are and that bad writing and bad ideas are *not* welcome in the industry, especially in self published works...
I hope Peapod doesn't twitch TOO much. It STINKS.
It is soooooooooooooo rotten that I nicknamed it "The Abomination", and have it now classed as "The Worst Thing VJ Wrote, Even Worse Than Her Earliest Works".
Yeah. NOT going down that route again, and if I ever write a *real* sequel to "Hearts Remembering", it's going to be MY way, with MY ideas and NO influence from those who have no f@cking clue about anything writing wise.......................
I also have a video to share with all of my fellow writers out there. It's about why one needs a lot of writing pals, not just one, and how the real writing friends out there will help you improve as a writer, and a writing pal yourself.
I highly recommend that all writers and authors watch this. It's not only loaded with great information, Ms. Moreci is wonderful and entertaining as well.
And before anyone thinks of describing me as an "asshole writer", keep in mind I am the one who is willing to learn, grow and practice, and try writing new stuff if my old ideas are not to publisher's liking... My ORIGINAL ideas that I wrote completely BY MYSELF... Anyone who really knows me knows I am not a jealous writer and logic dictates had I been jealous for "that reason", I would have done the exact same thing when "No Regrets" was rejected and I was being pushed to self publish it "as is"......
Have a great weekend everyone!