Yeah - it was harsh feedback on that pesky draft 2. But I love my readers for being so honest. Next time if they could just stab me in the front so I could see them coming, and not the back, that would be great. Also, honestly - the twisting of the knife - just completely unnecessary guys.
But there was hard work ahead, no doubt. And I no longer had the luxury of writing all day long if I so desired. Side note - I have never written for an entire day in my life and have no plans to ever do so - at least in the immediate next hundred and fifty years.
I was back caring for Jaden and that left me only nap times and my two days off when his nanny/manager (who just got him a guest spot on Oprah too!) came swooping in to my and Jaden's rescue. But there was something terribly sweet and innocent about writing a children's fantasy/adventure novel while my beautiful little boy napped.
First things first - there were all sorts of structural issues. Yes - they loved the characters and the general idea, along with a lot of the adventures. But I had some serious editing to do.
Over the course of the next few months I worked out many of the issues, which included completely changing the situation my main character was in, taking characters and combining them, taking other characters completely out of the mix, adding other characters, deleting quests, adding quests, doing some laundry and food shopping (this of course had nothing to do with the novel, but it still had to get done), and doing lots of grammar/spelling yumminess. You know, nothing much.
I got it all done! And I was really, really pleased. I know it sounds like I'm setting this up for a big fall when the readers got their hands on this new 3rd draft - but no fall was to come. People really seemed to love it. I finally had something to work with. Some said it was ready to go out to the agents, others had a few suggestions first. The second group was correct.
I spent another month or so revising draft 3, tightening where I could, working out more grammar/spelling yumminess, and doing more laundry (which never seems to end in my household!)
It was ready. Or so I thought.