I’m constantly looking for ways to improve the odds for finding representation for my next book, currently titled Sentimental Journey. Having taken dozens of courses and webinars, I’m working now on moving from “good writing” to “I have to have that book!” And I’m finding that this step is to ordinary writing courses what microsurgery is to applying a Band-Aid. It’s working on the finer points of your writing as opposed to just telling the story. It’s elevating good writing to “can’t put it down” writing. It requires an understanding and skill at a level far removed from the basics.
I’ve been through Sentimental Journey at least five times now, and had feedback from three early readers and one partial and one full professional edit. I’ve added, changed and deleted something on every single page at least once during those reviews. I’ve applied, to the best of my ability/understanding, the principles in Donald Maass’s Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook. I’ve had several “aha” moments reading numerous agent blogs and gone back to make additional changes. How do I know when it’s ready to go?
The competition for a good agent and publisher is so keen. Once the book gets a rejection from one, I can’t rewrite and try again with them. It has to be right the first time. How do you know when it’s “right?”