There are three amazing, selfless, friends who have taken time out of their crazy busy lives recently to read my new manuscript with a discriminating eye. Then, they have spent even more time hashing out the good and the bad with me. I’ve never felt the need to do this with any of my past eleven books. But, since I’m changing genres, and this book has been such a labor of love and agony for so long, I have been paranoid about my new writing style using a contemporary voice rather than an historical one. I felt a desperate need for outside opinions before I could push my creation from the safety of the nest and allow it to soar out into the scary literary world.
All three readers absolutely loved my vampire hero. But, only one liked my heroine and felt like they could identify with her in any way. One of my awesome readers had a really difficult time getting to know her; and last night, my third reader told me she couldn’t stand my beautiful heroine, Dawn, at all. Not even a little bit? Gasp! She said she was a ‘ditzy blonde’ and sexy Mateo Two Moons deserved so much better. O.M.G.
Now, I don’t know about other writers, but I have really appreciated this honest criticism. Since I haven’t submitted the manuscript to a publisher or agent, yet, hopefully there is still time to fix the big issues. Like a very unpopular heroine. Wow. Although, it can be a bitter pill to swallow, I know that if the majority of people (two out of three) who read my draft don’t like something, then I’m thinking the big guns are not going to like it very much either. My marvelous friends aren’t professional editors or agents, but their opinions count just as much, because all of them are readers, just at different levels. I have no doubt the way the words I’ve written touches those select few will be similar to the way they affect the all-important readers who sit in those agencies and publishing offices.
So, it’s back to the drawing board for this battered manuscript…again. I only have four hundred and fifty-three pages to revise so that my poor ostracized Dawn can be the woman every woman dreams of being, and the goddess in every man’s fantasies. No more ‘blonde moments’ for this girl.