Please help a poor newcomer...

tinkerdan

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I would echo some others about getting in 30 posts and possibly posting a piece of the work for review.
I started work on mine in the 1970s and spent five years making mostly trash.
Then life got in the way and I didn't get back to it until 2001; though it was always churning in my mind all that time.
It took someone snooping into my stuff to get me started when they said, 'Hey, why haven't you done anything with this.'
so in 10 years of edits and cuts and everything else I still had a monster.
Wish I had discovered this place before I did; however I don't regret that I went with self publishing.

Published at the end of 2012 because my dad was dying and I wanted him to read it. (He did or at least had help with someone reading it to him.)
The question is; what is your big motivator to publish it in a hurry now?

And then; do you have more story in you and maybe you should get that started while trying to get interest in this one.
Do you write to write or do you write because you are hungry; no judgement, but they do require differing tactics.

Just some thoughts.
I've got more; however I have to feed that hungry part right now.
 

BT Jones

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This says something in and of itself. If you're wanting to lean up your 'acts' by 20/30/20k words, 25/30/20% respectively, 23% overall (300k words)--massive portions of text--then you likely shouldn't be sending these to publishers or agents yet. Again, I'm not published or experienced by any means. But, they'll be wanting something closer to ready to print. Their own editors, I suspect, are not there to refine 'your story,' yet only adjust it to their guidelines.

My inexperienced gut says, perform your trimming down first and see how that changes the story, the start of each part and ends. Then see where it sits. What could you then shift or add to give you better three-part/novel-endings, and bring it inline with preferred lengths as @Ashley R makes note of.

This is something I've had to consider myself.

K2
Thanks K2. I think you are right, but its a touch call because it takes so long for agents to respond and for these things to gain traction. But then, I suppose, it’s no point giving an agent the first 3 chapters of the final draft and then not have the next seven to give to them if they ask for it. Maybe I’m just impatient, but I feel I’ve had so much momentum these last six months, the idea of sitting in my own bubble refining it again for 6 months feels crushingly restrictivie.
 

BT Jones

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I would echo some others about getting in 30 posts and possibly posting a piece of the work for review.
I started work on mine in the 1970s and spent five years making mostly trash.
Then life got in the way and I didn't get back to it until 2001; though it was always churning in my mind all that time.
It took someone snooping into my stuff to get me started when they said, 'Hey, why haven't you done anything with this.'
so in 10 years of edits and cuts and everything else I still had a monster.
Wish I had discovered this place before I did; however I don't regret that I went with self publishing.

Published at the end of 2012 because my dad was dying and I wanted him to read it. (He did or at least had help with someone reading it to him.)
The question is; what is your big motivator to publish it in a hurry now?

And then; do you have more story in you and maybe you should get that started while trying to get interest in this one.
Do you write to write or do you write because you are hungry; no judgement, but they do require differing tactics.

Just some thoughts.
I've got more; however I have to feed that hungry part right now.
I’m hungry, desperate to get these characters out into the world and to tell my story. I probably rather naively wish I could generate enough interest to justify quitting my job and writing full time, but hearing your story, amongst others, suggests that may well be a pipe dream.
 

tinkerdan

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I have a day job; so it's not hunger and I write to write, I can now take my time.
I've self published two novels and this year I took the first, which needed work, and split it into three novels all around 100k plus.

And that brings me to another thought.
Doing that involves taking three acts and making 9 acts and turning each three into a full story.
So, unless you already have that built into your work, it will be more work to get your broken pieces weaved back together.
Something to consider if you decide to break the novel up.

I already had to break that first novel and that's how I got the first two.

Breaking the novel again was tough though I had a bit of it built into the writing.

On self publishing:
You need to be willing to work hard.
You are going to be the agent/publisher/editor in the long run because everything that is wrong with your work will fall on you.

And you really need to give your best to those who are willing to pay for your work.

That means you will have to endure or enjoy reading the whole thing many many many many many...times.
 

Brian G Turner

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it takes so long for agents to respond and for these things to gain traction
I probably rather naively wish I could generate enough interest to justify quitting my job and writing full time
That's why you use time while pitching a book to write your next. Publishers appear to commonly want one a year.
 

BT Jones

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That's why you use time while pitching a book to write your next. Publishers appear to commonly want one a year.
Yeah, I had a plan to do one a year, but I would only be able to manage that if I wasn’t working full time. This one has taken me 5 years as a background hobby!
 

BT Jones

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I have a day job; so it's not hunger and I write to write, I can now take my time.
I've self published two novels and this year I took the first, which needed work, and split it into three novels all around 100k plus.

And that brings me to another thought.
Doing that involves taking three acts and making 9 acts and turning each three into a full story.
So, unless you already have that built into your work, it will be more work to get your broken pieces weaved back together.
Something to consider if you decide to break the novel up.

I already had to break that first novel and that's how I got the first two.

Breaking the novel again was tough though I had a bit of it built into the writing.

On self publishing:
You need to be willing to work hard.
You are going to be the agent/publisher/editor in the long run because everything that is wrong with your work will fall on you.

And you really need to give your best to those who are willing to pay for your work.

That means you will have to endure or enjoy reading the whole thing many many many many many...times.
So you have already self-published the novel but are going back to it to expand it?
For my stories, they are already preordained. There are 10 of them, all mapped out and plotted. I have a detailed database of everything that happens to all the characters, all the threads, etc. I know where this is going (or at least where I want it to go).
On a separate note, you are not the first person to have suggested getting 30 posts and then putting some of my work up for review. Is this a definite forum rule that I missed?
 

Teresa Edgerton

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Yes, newcomers can only post something they've written in the critiques section when they have 30 counted posts. You are almost there. If you decide you want to do it, read the rules for the critiques section first, to make sure you aren't posting an excerpt that is too long, etc. (There is no rule that says you have to post something for critique. That is completely up to you. If several people have suggested it, it's just because they think it might benefit you to do so.)

The critiques here are meant to be constructive. Compared to some critiques I have seen elsewhere, they are tactful and kindly meant. But ... if you are not used to having several people at once point out all the things they think you should address, the experience can be a bit overwhelming. So be sure that you are ready for what follows before you ask for a critique.

In fact, it would be a good idea to read some of the critiques that have already been posted, maybe participate in the process by critiquing someone else's excerpt, before you ask for critiques on something of your own. That way you will know what to expect. (And if you do a few critiques on the work of others, it will add to your post count and help you reach 30 a bit sooner.)
 

BT Jones

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In fact, it would be a good idea to read some of the critiques that have already been posted, maybe participate in the process by critiquing someone else's excerpt, before you ask for critiques on something of your own. That way you will know what to expect. (And if you do a few critiques on the work of others, it will add to your post count and help you reach 30 a bit sooner.)
Thanks Teresa, that sounds like a good idea. I will give that a go.
 

Jo Zebedee

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blah - flags. So many flags.
Thanks K2. I think you are right, but its a touch call because it takes so long for agents to respond and for these things to gain traction. But then, I suppose, it’s no point giving an agent the first 3 chapters of the final draft and then not have the next seven to give to them if they ask for it. Maybe I’m just impatient, but I feel I’ve had so much momentum these last six months, the idea of sitting in my own bubble refining it again for 6 months feels crushingly restrictivie.
Don’t send it out. Wait until it is ready. And certainly don’t until we’ve had a chance to check out your opening ;)
 

BT Jones

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Don’t send it out. Wait until it is ready. And certainly don’t until we’ve had a chance to check out your opening ;)
Thanks Jo, it’s a really great feeling to know all you guys are here to help! I will keep plugging away and aim to post some excerpts in the not too distant future.
 

Teresa Edgerton

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I should also have mentioned, while I was on the subject of doing critiques, that you can learn a lot by critiquing, sometimes even more than by being critiqued, BT Jones. Seeing one's own mistakes in someone else's work, where one doesn't have the emotional investment, can be illuminating.
 

BT Jones

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I should also have mentioned, while I was on the subject of doing critiques, that you can learn a lot by critiquing, sometimes even more than by being critiqued, BT Jones. Seeing one's own mistakes in someone else's work, where one doesn't have the emotional investment, can be illuminating.
Thanks Teresa, yes I think I will give it a go once I am back from holiday and back in my working / creative space.
 
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