Well somehow I got past my anxiety over chapter one. I’m still thinking about it and not sure if it’s the right opening but I’ve moved on. I’ve actually finished the first Act of my book, revised it the best I could and to my surprise, sent it out to three friends to beta read for me. I’m not sure if sending out part of a book is good or not, but I wanted to see if my opening was decent enough. Or if my idea in general was good and if I was on the right track. Basically I’m looking for general feedback, if the liked the story, the characters and setting. Nothing more as I’m still struggling with revisions.
I’m now half way through my second act. I’ve moved quicker through these chapters, all together I’m starting Chapter 15 tonight, or tomorrow. They’re small chapters, about 2000 – 3000 words each. I seem to like keeping my chapters in that length for some reason. I’m sure there are area’s where I can put two chapters together, just haven’t decided if I want to do that. I love the energy that comes with the middle part of the book. The characters are more fleshed out – I hope – and we get to see them argue, bicker and make choices that may not be the best and the consequences that come out of it. They are at least coming to life this time around on the page. Though that could just be my own mental perception and not what I’ve written.
I’m defiantly re-writing more than editing once again. I’m still sticking to the plot line, but am changing points of view and descriptions. I’ve had a couple of high energy moments that I’ve tried to shorten the sentence length on to make it a faster pace to go along with the tension, fear and life-threatening situation. I’m not sure if I’m capturing the suspense I want the reader to experience. It may sound more like an adventure than a suspenseful thriller. Maybe that’s a better path to go down? The book has to deal with ghosts and evil spirits, but maybe it doesn’t have to scare my reader out of their seats. I’ll have to get a real editor to help me find a direction to stick to… or maybe a bit of both won’t hurt either.
There’s a lot of second guessing this time around with the story. I’m still enjoying the chapter when I write it, but it takes more energy out of me. I’m trying to stay a head with the grammar mistakes I continue to make, catch them quicker and make the change as I’m working. It’s draining and I find that I can only accomplish one or one and half chapters before my brain decides it’s enough and I go off and do something else. Have lunch, watch Netflix or play a video game. What happens next is the afternoon slipping away and having no desire to go back and work on another chapter that evening.
I’m not sure if that’s just procrastination, or if the book is no good. That’s when my dark critic inside my head comes to life, filling my mind with doubts and fears. That I’m no good at this, the book will never be finished, nobody will want to read it… blah… blah… blah. It’s tough dealing with that critic, especially now that I’m not working and my dream is hanging on a thread. This may be the only time I have to produce something amazing, to finish a novel, find an agent or publisher and have my dream of being publish finally come true. The more I idle and don’t work and don’t find a new paying job, the more this critic comes at me telling me I’m a failure. I’m lucky I have a boyfriend who cares about me and my dream to let me peruse it… but how long will that last?
So you see, the progress is slow. I’m hoping to hear back from the other two who read the first 6 chapters to let me know their initial thoughts. If I have more people read it, and more feedback, the better the book will become.