Learning to Write for an Audience
The first pass by my editors has not gone as smoothly as I had imagined. It may have left me a little shaken about my work, but what it has taught me about myself is invaluable.
First and foremost, of the three people I have editing for me, all three have completely different things they look for in a book, One, we’ll name Editor Two, probably wouldn’t read any of my work past the third chapter if they didn’t know me personally and were provided a free copy. The writing style is not their cup of tea. The other two would fight through any of their issues with style as they would look at it as a challenge.
The feedback that Editor Two has provided has taught me quite a bit right off the bat about writing for a general audience, Some lack of details shouldn’t be written off as a stylistic license on the part of an author, but instead are real issues that put up barriers between the work and the potential first time audience. This issues need to be nipped in the bud as soon as they are discovered. Though I am not going to change the style in order to accommodate everyone, there is quite a bit of room to tighten things up, especially with this being the first real work that is interfacing with other people outside of my head.
I am also learning quite a bit about my reactions to criticism and what it does to my own moral. The first feedback I received from Editor One, hit home hard and left me fairly demoralized. After staying away from the work for a day and returning, I reread it, agreed with the insights provided– but also at the same time, realized that “damn, I still really like the way this is turning out.” With Editor Two, the input was a little more damning, though in a very constructive way. I fully anticipate being able to fce the work again and feel the same confidence I felt before.
Time to roll up my sleeves and work on a third rewrite.