I promised I'd update you all on how the second rewrite is going in my monthly blog post. In short, it's going very well.
I'm currently editing chapter nine out of nineteen (plus an epilogue), so I'm almost halfway through this round of edits and each change is making the manuscript stronger and more cohesive. It feels like a different beast to the book that existed before this rewrite began.
Three readers read the book this time around. Two were less positive, with feedback on the character arcs, stakes, pace, and confusing worldbuilding elements, while the remaining reader was very positive, finding the story heart-wrenching. All their feedback was specific and useful and our meeting after they read the book was especially valuable. We came up with a list of around fourteen ideas which fixed many aspects of the book they were less pleased with (mostly in the set up and the pay off) and I got a real sense of the kind of book they wanted.
As it goes most the time, not all the suggested changes are minor. Combined in-line comments added up to around 140 between the three readers, which is probably about average for these swaps. Most of these are minor, paragraph or scene level, stuff. The more substantial suggestions came out of our meeting discussion. For example, to go beyond the maths, I'm adding a third POV character to the story to add some tension and a better sense of what life is like on the ground in the middle of an apocalypse. I'm also rewriting the epilogue from a different viewpoint and I'm adjusting the main characters to be more involved in their stories.
So, there'll be a lot for my lovely beta readers to sink their teeth into, including a lot of new content. I hope they're looking forward to the read ahead of them. I'm currently on target to get this to them by May 15th. Here's hoping they like it.
Oh! I also had a few compliments. One of the readers has previously worked as a programmer and for NASA and they thought the tech in the book and the tech's failure was scarily realistic. I almost melted with glee.
But what's happening with book one in the series, The Approach?
It's been a while since I gave you all an update on the first book in the main YA sci-fi series. Essentially it's been on hold while I got the prequel to a good place because I didn't want any consistency issues between the origin story and the first book.
I have, though, been moving forward with it in some ways. I spent the last week or so approaching eight editors for quotes and sample edits on book one, and I've booked my favourite editor to do a copyedit on The Approach in mid July. I'm hoping to get the prequel edited around the same time, though that depends slightly on cashflow.
Next up will be booking in the cover designer for book one. All little baby steps toward publication, but I'm so excited.
Until next time!