#AtoZChallenge: L is for Let it go

A-Z Challenge

For the A-Z challenge, I am posting writing and editing tips to help you improve and enhance your writing.

L is for Let it go

let it go 3

So you’ve spent hours on your manuscript. You know the story, the plot, and the characters inside out. You’re beginning to feel like this every time you look at it:

let it go 5

So what now?

What do you do with your precious manuscript?

Do you:

  • Read through it one more time – after all there must be something you’ve missed?
  • Send it to an agent?
  • Self-publish on Amazon?
  • Lock it in a drawer? After all, you wrote it so it can’t be any good can it?

The answer is none of these (what a surprise!).

The answer is that you let it go. You stop checking through it maniacally, mulling over and over little plot points, changing minor bits and pieces. You certainly don’t send it to an agent or self-publish yet. And please, please don’t shut it away. You’ve invested time and energy and passion – don’t waste it.

But do let it go.

let it go 1

And by this I mean send it off into the big wide world, into the hands of a reader (or a few). It’s time to get some feedback; honest, impartial feedback.

If you can’t afford to pay an editor who provides beta reads, then look on sites like Goodreads or Authonomy. These are great places to receive some constructive criticism of your work.

It’s time for the next stage in your writing journey.

Any suggestions for where to find great beta readers? Do share by leaving a comment below. Thank you!

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17 comments

  1. I may have another client for you, but I just gave her the skinny on beta readers, so when you get her book, it will have had a thorough going over. Love that you chose Frozen for a theme song – every parent in American can sing Let It GO and wish they couldn’t!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can do this bit. It’s the two years further down the line when a writer you really respect has told you the plot is unbelievable (and you work on it), then a professional has told you it will be the next best seller IF you cut 20,000 and all the ‘philosophy’ (and you work on it), the next two major readers, say expand the discussions and cut the discussions (and you work on it). Then you send it to the first reader again, who says you have cut all the best bits and lost your ‘voice’.

    Hoping you address this… but we have passed F is for Feedback.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Will store up feedback for a post after the challenge (or try and fit it into another letter!). But for now all I’ll say is – listen to the advice that makes you think ‘oh yes’, and the advice that lots of readers agree on, and trust your gut feeling. People’s opinions will be subjective, but if everyone comes back and says ‘I hated such and such’ or ‘I loved such and such’ then there’s a pretty good chance you can trust what they say 🙂

      Like

      1. That’s more or less how I try to make decisions, but I have a non-fiction MS at the moment receiving contradictory advice, and I feel even less clear than usual about whose advice it best.

        Thanks for the reassurance about Border Line.

        Liked by 1 person

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