I’m on revision seventeen of a new query for my first novel,* which I may be thinking about sending out into the world again, and I thought it might be less time-consuming to write a query first and then read the novel again with an eye for more revision.
Yeah. I’m that naïve.
The first query was raw and full of voice. Unfortunately, the voice wasn’t talking about the plot in a coherent way.
Version seven was full of plot info, but was as pseudo-personal as a salesman’s handshake.
Version twelve was smooth, witty, and (from what I could tell) well-written, but it’s describing some other book—I kept it though, in case I decide to write it someday.
Sixteen was built out of the best of everything that had gone before–but the welding showed and the sentences were packed. We’re talking Humpty-Dumpty’s overstuffed portmanteau** popping open in the airport, dirty unmentionables flinging themselves into the TSA guy’s face jammed.
But seventeen . . . might be the one. It appears to be about the novel I wrote and not the one I would have written if I’d known the query would be easier to do (see version twelve). It has sentences of average length. There’s voice in there, too.
So I’m backing away to let it age for a while—at least until I read the MS again.
Luckily, I like the characters—it’s not their fault I used them for my first full-length effort—and I can do the run-through and note taking outside of my Writing Time™, which is devoted to my latest WIP.***
I’ve made plans. Let the divine laughter and throwing of banana peels begin!
*AKA my first ‘practice’ novel, which was retired after three years of rejection and revision. I occasionally read it over and make a couple changes, just to let it know that I still think about it.
** A virtual brownie point to everyone who just said, “Oh. Alice Through the Looking Glass. Cute.”
*** I swear, if revisions get in the way of completing the first draft of Pigeon, I’ll stuff first novel back in its crypt and forget about it. I’ll find a place for a combat-trained librarian and a cyborg pressman in something else.