Sunday, March 27, 2011

Query Halt


Screech!

I have halted the query process based on feedback from my beta reader and a critique group colleague.  While I feel secure that my typos and spelling errors have been cleaned up, I have learned that I have problems with characterization. 

My beta reader told me she would love to hang out with my main character but cannot connect with him.  “Can you give him something outside of work to do?” She asked.  “Maybe make him a dog lover or something?”

My critique colleague said my main character did not seem to have much depth, that things seemed a little too easy for him. 

When I put this feedback side-by-side with what two prior agents said in wonderful rejection letters, I instantly knew I had written a cardboard character.  I had the choice to either trunk the novel or do a rewrite.

I chose to fatten up my paper-doll, because I am a firm believer in finishing what I start.  Therefore, I have stopped the query process while I rewrite to give my main character more substance and depth. 

I am also working on a second novel, which my critique group seems to like.  I have never worked on two large projects at the same time.  I am learning how to prioritize my time so I do not get behind on one or the other.  Believe me, working on two novels can be challenging. 

This is it for now.  Happy writing!

6 comments:

Deb said...

I'm also learning how to work on multiple writing projects. It's a little uncomfortable at times, but I'm certainly getting better with practice! Good luck. :)

Susan Littlefield said...

Hi Deb,

I find myself working more on one than the other, which is the novel that I want to get back out in query circulation. However, I have my other novel I need to keep going to receive critiques on. I'm certainly learning how to juggle!

Good luck to you too!

Jai Joshi said...

Characters are too important not to work hard on them. I admire that you're devoting more time to it before sending out more queries.

Jai

Susan Littlefield said...

Thanks, Jai. I am determined, that's for sure.

Jettica said...

Did you find the critique a little disheartening. I know I would.

Although better to know than to rack up a load of form rejections with no idea why!

Good luck with the revisions. Shouldn't be too hard to fix. I feel I'm going to have the same problem when I let my novel loose on beta readers.

Susan Littlefield said...

Jettica,

I actually have found my critique group beneficial. I have learned what both the positive and negative aspects of my writing. Members have come and gone from my critique group-those who have moved on have left me with some inspiring lessons in writing. I continue to learn from those who still part of the group.

I have to add a whole lot of information, as well as take away or "hone" other scenes, but it has not been too difficult thus far.

Thank you so much for stopping by and replying, and offering your support as another writer.

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