Post-novel / pre-novel downtime

The next thing I’ve got to do, writing-wise, is do the third round of revisions on my middle-grade novel: Everyone Hates You. Final-round revisions (in this case according to notes given to me by my agent) are a pretty delicate operation. You’re picking apart the pieces that don’t work, but you largely want to leave things untouched. Since this is probably the draft that will go out on submission, it’s also the place where I’ll tighten language and make whatever tweaks and/or cuts I want to make.

That’s honestly the hard thing about revision. When I was writing on my own, I always knew exactly where to make stylistic changes: at the end. But once you’re working with agents and editors, there’s never an end. You’ve always got one more round of revisions. And then suddenly you’re at the copy-editing stage, and you don’t want to make more revisions, because then you might introduce some error that the copy editor won’t see.

Anyway, I’m giving myself a few days (at least until Monday) before I start that. In the meantime I’m doing nothing. Brainstorming. Taking notes. Eating turkey.